Vaccinate or lose benefits

Mark and Michelle Jones with their children Athena and Lewis (both 3) and Mason (2). Picture: Jon Hewson d403575
Mark and Michelle Jones with their children Athena and Lewis (both 3) and Mason (2). Picture: Jon Hewson d403575

Parents will need to make sure that their children have received the meningococcal C, pneumococcal and varicella (chicken pox) vaccines or risk losing their family tax benefit part A and childcare benefit.

Cindy Ellard is a mother of two who vaccinated her children, but believes parents should be able to make their own decisions regarding vaccination.

‘No parent makes a decision to be selfish, but uses their best judgement to make a decision, which is their right to do as a parent,’ she said.

‘People may have experienced lifesaving scenarios because their child is vaccinated, or in a smaller percentage, experienced the exact opposite.’

Mother of three Michelle Jones believes parents who don’t vaccinate are selfish.

‘They are putting other children at risk,’ she said.

‘My son had a serious heart condition as a baby, needing open heart surgery at three months and while in ICU, I saw a baby whose brother caught chicken pox at day care.

‘He brought it home and gave it to this baby, who needed life support because of the infection.

‘It was heart breaking to see a family go through that due to another family’s choice.’

Ms Jones believes unvaccinated children should be removed from school or day-care for their potential to infect others.