By John Stone
Originally published 5 August 2013 this article showed that the organization which had mounted a petition against Jenny McCarthy appearing on 'The View' had government and pharmaceutical industry ties. It may be helpful to re-visit it in relation revived and completely unfounded allegations against McCarthy that her son did not have autism diagnosis...
Despite Karen Ernst’s repeated insistence that Voices for Vaccines - who recently got up a petition against Jenny McCarthy on Change.com - is an independent parent-led organization speaking up for the vaccine program, the evidence that it was started by the Atlanta based non-profit partner of the Centers for Disease Control, Task Force for Global Health, to promote their joint policies is overwhelming. John Stone (UK editor of Age of Autism) reports:
A few days ago I wrote about vaccine program advocate Prof Dorit Reiss, her unconventional views about agency capture, and her links with Voices for Vaccines “an administrative project” of Task Force for Global Health a partner organization to the Centers for Disease Control and Emory University in Atlanta. The first response to my article was from Karen Ernst a Minnesota based officer of Voices for Vaccines :
“Voices for Vaccines has as its fiscal agent The Task Force for Global Health. They take in our donations and cut checks for us. Many non-profits who are too small to handle their own 501(c)3 status use fiscal agents in this way; it's quite common. We have absolutely no access to their money, nor do we benefit from their money. Voices for Vaccines is not tied to any pharmaceutical corporation or to any government organization. Thus far, all of our donations have been small and have come from individuals. Thus, the dots you have connected paint an incorrect picture.”
Ernst was again engaged the other day with Steve Schneider's article Big Pharma's faking a "grass-roots" campaign to keep Jenny McCarthy off "The View" in Mark Crispin Miller's News from the Underground blog noticed that a Change.com petition against McCarthy was being promoted by ‘Voices for Vaccines, St Paul, Minnesota’. Ernst was first to respond once more :
“I’m one of the two moms who runs VFV. Your blog post is curious to me, seeing that you are an academic. It seems you consulted Barbara Loe Fisher for her anti-vaccine conspiracy theories about who we are, but you never bothered to actually consult us.
“I am the person who started the petition. I have been in contact with exactly zero people who work for pharmaceutical companies or who work in the government about the petition. At best, your headline is misleading. The rest of your blog post is inaccurate. You’ve misrepresented our relationship with our Scientific Advisory Board and our fiscal agent.”
For the record the current Voices for Vaccine website states:
“Voices for Vaccines was re-launched in early 2013 after two young parents, Karen Ernst and Ashley Shelby, volunteered to lead the organization in rallying parents of immunized children to combat vaccine misinformation and increase immunization rates. In 2010, Shelby and Ernst founded the blog Moms Who Vax, which offers resources on vaccine information, commentary, and first-person stories from parents who immunize. They are currently working to develop a new organization, the Minnesota Childhood Immunization Coalition.”
The name ‘Voices for Vaccines’ rang a bell but I could not immediately find any pre-2013 references on Google. The web archive was rather more helpful, however, with the earliest page holding any text dating from 13 May 2008 (passages in bold are my emphasis):