Content from anti-vaccination YouTube channel removed for violating guidelines

The channel has a history of posting and sharing content that perpetuates falsehoods and misleading information about Covid-19 vaccines. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM IRIS KOH/YOUTUBE

SINGAPORE - Content from a YouTube channel with an anti-vaccination stance has been removed, after it was found to have violated the platform's community guidelines.

The channel is based on a group called Healing The Divide, founded by Ms Iris Koh, a Singaporean, and claims to warn people about the dangers of vaccination.

The Ministry of Health (MOH) said on Sunday (Nov 7) that Ms Koh's channel has a history of posting and sharing content that perpetuates falsehoods and misleading information about Covid-19 vaccines.

MOH said: "The Government takes a serious view of the deliberate communication of these falsehoods and will not hesitate to take action against those who put the public's health and well-being at risk by spreading misinformation about Covid-19 and vaccines."

The ministry added that it welcomes the latest removal of content from Ms Koh's YouTube channel, which included content titled Town Hall Meeting: United We Stand For Choice, and Healing The Divide: Remembering Those We Love And Lost.

Facebook had also previously suspended Ms Koh's account on more than one instance for violating community guidelines, MOH said.

The ministry added: "We advise members of the public not to speculate or spread misinformation which may cause public alarm, and to refer to credible sources of information instead."

The public can visit this website for the latest information on Covid-19 and vaccinations, or this website for information about consumer safety.

A YouTube spokesman said the platform's Covid-19 medical misinformation policy removes claims about Covid-19 vaccinations that contradict expert consensus from local health authorities or the World Health Organisation.

The spokesman added: "Since October last year, we've removed over 130,000 videos for violating our Covid-19 vaccine policies. Additionally, we have vaccine alerts that point users to authoritative information about the Covid-19 vaccine."

Ms Koh responded to the MOH statement in a blog post on Sunday night, saying the announcement that her work was misinformation was "truly disappointing".

She added that a town hall event was held together with concerned Singaporeans who are faced with job losses, concerned parents who do not want to be encouraged into vaccinating their children and others who feel angry with current measures.

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