The Byron Shire Echo – Issue 36.14 – September 15, 2021

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Page 18

Opinion/Community at Work/Letters

North Coast news online

Mullum Herbals respond to SBS report on their COVID-19 vaccine handout Val Iwaszko Mullumbimby Herbals is a business which offers natural health products and advice. All our staff are trained naturopaths having completed a minimum of four years of academic training. The naturopathic philosophy is that the body has an inherent healing capacity, which can be enhanced by healthy diet and lifestyle factors, as well as by tailored herbal and nutritional supplements. There is currently a major drive from medical authorities, the government, and the media to get at least 70 per cent of the population vaccinated. Many people are compliant, while others are being pressured to do so to remain in their jobs and maintain their social liberties. Although minimised in the mainstream media, many people are aware of, and concerned about, potential vaccine side effects that are listed on the Australian Government Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) Database of Adverse Event notifications with 46,438 adverse reported events for the coronavirus vaccines in Australia. The TGA has recorded 448 deaths following a vaccination

in the period 1/1/2019 – 7/8/2021. Following investigation of those deaths a causal link has been established in nine deaths confirming them as being directly linked to vaccination. Medically, there is nothing on offer to help people prepare for vaccination, or for symptoms post-vaccination, beyond paracetamol. In the recent SBS report regarding Mullumbimby Herbals (discussed below), a doctor representing the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) stated ‘You don’t need to do anything to prepare for receiving [a vaccine].’ In this environment, some members of the community have asked the staff at Mullumbimby Herbals if we could offer suggestions to support their health around the vaccination process. It was owing to these requests that I formulated the document COVID Vax Notes. This is not a flyer (as previously stated), but rather a handout given

to those clients requesting such information. The information in this document was based on the experience of many years as a naturopathic health practitioner combined with evidence from the literature and professional sources. I have supplied The Echo with the references and sources regarding the advice given in the handout. The advice regarding pregnancy, fertility and breast feeding was written before the very recent health policy regarding pregnant women being an at-risk group for COVID-19, and was based on multiple sources. For example, Pfizer’s pharmacokinetic animal studies which found that the vaccine’s lipid nano particles (LNP) bioaccumulate in the ovaries in high levels (as well as spleen, liver and adrenal glands). Secondly, a COVID-19 professional webinar (MTHFR Support, 4 August 2021) which presented an analysis of data from the US Government Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) on reported reproductive side effects.

Thirdly, evidence-based documents provided by the organisation Doctors for COVID Ethics (whose membership is comprised of hundreds of international doctors and scientists) that relayed these concerns. This source also provides evidence for the shedding of spike proteins (not shedding of the virus), which many clients express concern about and that was mentioned in the COVID Vax Handout. The current issue has come about because the handout unfortunately became the focus of a local Facebook (FB) group, after it was posted by a member that visited Mullumbimby Herbals. Some members of this FB group were disapproving of the document and Mullumbimby Herbals for handing it out to customers concerned about vaccine side effects. I do understand that there is considerable anxiety in the community about both the coronavirus and about the perceived influence that being unvaccinated may have on lockdown measures and restrictions of civil liberties. As it turned out, the colourful dialogue on the group’s FB page attracted the attention of a journalist from SBS, hence Mullumbimby Herbals ended up on a national news forum. Mullumbimby Herbals has

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CWA Share The Dignity Bangalow CWA are conducting a Share the Dignity drive to support homeless women during the month of September. Donations of personal hygiene items can be dropped at collection points at Chemist Outlet Byron Bay, Bangalow Newsagency or the Bangalow CWA rooms.

BV VIEW Club Brunswick Valley VIEW Club will have a friendship morning at Hotel Brunswick on Thursday, 16 September at 11am. Come and have a coffee and enjoy a catch-up with VIEW friends after the lockdown. Info: Margaret 0429 966 894.

Help the homeless Artists Donate to Help those without a Home. You can place your bid on some beautiful artwork donated by 25 Australian artists including Craig Ruddy, Ann Thomson, Konstantina and John Dahlsen. Auction starts 9am Saturday 11 September and ends 9pm Sunday 19 September. All proceeds go to the Housing and Homelessness Stream of the Northern Rivers Community Foundation’s 2021 Community Grants Round. To find out more, go to the News & Events page at

Lismore High dinner The proposed Lismore High School Centenary Dinner that was to be held on September 11, 2021 at the Lismore Workers Club , has been postponed to March 5, 2022. For further information, phone Helen George: 0414 734 313.

Cancer Support Group The Byron Bay General Cancer Support Group has been running for four years and welcomes new participants. The

aim of the group is to provide a safe, supportive and friendly environment for people with cancer to discuss how they are feeling and connect with other people with cancer. It runs on the first Tuesday of the month. Call David on 0428 187 025 or email david@ or Ken on 0411 233 755

Ewingsdale Community Ewingsdale Community Association welcomes all residents of Ewingsdale to become members of their Association. You can join at their website, for $10 per household per year. The committee holds monthly meetings on the first Monday of the month at 7pm. Usually these are held at Ewingsdale Hall but during lockdown they are held via Zoom. For more information contact ewingsdalecommunity@ We are a community association and we need the community to be part of it.

Toastmasters Byron Cavanbah Toastmasters meetings, coaching in communication and self-development run on 1st and 3rd Mondays, 6.15 for 6.30pm at Byron Bay Services Club, Byron Bay. Online attendance allowed. Mullum Magic Toastmasters: Practice public speaking and develop leadership skills in a fun supportive environment. We meet every 2nd, 4th and 5th Monday at 6.45–9pm at the Mullumbimby Ex-Services Club, 58 Dalley St Mullumbimby. Contact Ashni, 0439 843 657. New members and guests welcome. Please note: This section is intended for the benefit of non-profit community groups.

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Mullumbimby District Neighbourhood Centre

drumming, yoga, ukulele, art and drama: 66856807 for booking and time details.

Mullumbimby & District Neighbourhood Centre is open Monday–Thursday 9am–4pm and offers a range of services and activities. Everyone is welcome to come and enjoy art, music, games, great food and more. Call reception on 6684 1286 and discover what is on offer. MDNC services that are running include: Community support/emergency relief: Food parcels, meals, assistance with electricity and Telstra bills. Listening Space: free counselling. Staying Home, Leaving Violence program. Integrated Domestic & Family Violence program. Financial Counselling: outreach available Thursdays & Fridays Financial Counselling: free service funded by the government, offering advocacy & assistance to find options to address debts. Information, referral and advocacy. To enquire about accessing any of these services call 6684 1286 or fill out an online enquiry form.

Low-cost or free food

Byron Community Centre Homeless Breakfast: 7:30–9am Wednesday. Homeless Showers: Monday and Wednesday 10am–12pm (book in at breakfasts). Women’s Support and Counselling: Friday 1–3pm, Community Cabin Carlyle St. Seniors Computer Club: Friday 9am–11am, Community Cabin Carlyle St (school term only). Seniors

Food Box Thursdays 9.30–11.30am at Uniting Church, Mullumbimby. If you have any sort of Centrelink card you may purchase cheap food, obtain free veges, and enjoy a cuppa. Free Food Relief Bags for anyone doing it tough, every Wednesday 10–12noon at The Hub Ocean Shores, cnr Rajah Rd and Bindaree Way. No ID or Concession Card required. NILs referral service also available. Check Facebook page The Hub Baptist Ocean Shores for details.

Drug support groups Call Alcoholics Anonymous 1800 423 431 or 0401 945 671 – 30 meetings a week in the Shire – Are you experiencing difficulties and challenges because of the alcohol or drug use of someone close to you? Learn coping skills and gain support from others. Narcotics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women for whom drugs had become a major problem. We are recovering addicts who meet regularly to help each other stay clean. For information and meetings call1300 652 820 or text your postcode to 0488 811 247. Are you concerned about somebody else’s drinking? Al-Anon Family Groups meeting held Fridays 2pm by Zoom. Contact for details’ – 1300 252 666 Please note: This section is intended for the benefit of non-profit community groups.

previously been the target of the mainstream media for stories on the so called ‘anti-vax capital’ of Mullumbimby over the years. We believe this is owing to our presence in the town, and because we offer complementary medicine, which has a long history of being dismissed and discredited. Contrary to the media’s portrayal, we have always maintained a resolute policy of not offering advice on whether people should get vaccinated. Rather, we aim to support people’s health. We do not view our community as being divided into two groups – ie, as so called ‘antiand pro-vaxxers’. We see people as people, whatever their choices, many who are struggling with stress and anxiety in these difficult times, and aim to offer them the support they require. There are universally accepted ethics related to freedom of choice and the right to informed consent regarding medical treatment, as well as the privacy of that information. At Mullumbimby Herbals, we absolutely uphold these ethical values, and we respect people, and seek to support their health, whatever their own choices are. Q Val Iwaszko is the manager of Mullumbimby Herbals


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worker? Surely someone paying 50 per cent of their wage in rent would consider their work essential if they were lucky enough to still be working. Single mothers paying rent and keeping their heads above water would consider their work essential. Too many others to name here… but the entitled seem to deem their positions more essential. Roland Dickson Bangalow

Champion a cause Delighted to read Dan Reade’s letter (September 1) calling for everyone to take on a new cause to champion. I have it, it’s called true democracy, because this is something that’s lacking in Australia with our duopoly party politics, pandering to corporations, mining companies and Big pPple and the environment? The reality is we have a choice between only two parties. They are similar and say whatever they think will win votes at the next election; then usually backflip when they win power. They have both now

become conceited tyrants, implementing legislation taking away the freedom and liberty of everyday people. We are heading towards a totalitarian regime where our bodily autonomy and right to choose has disappeared. It’s time for them to go. The solution is at the ballot box. We need to get away from party politics, and bring fresh new ideas, evidence-based policies and real, everyday people of integrity into parliament. We need true democracy. Australia’s Representatives, is a political party that I believe has the solution. As a single parent, qualified high school teacher, and social worker, and long time resident I understand what our community needs: affordable housing, protection of our natural environment, and tax reform. Plus, hearing the voice of the people and putting their needs first, and this is what AusReps stands for. So I encourage the community to consider this option when voting at the next federal election. Fiona Kaminski Ocean Shores