GSD Calls TG Reaction “Absurd”

The GSD has said that the Together Gibraltar reaction to the GSD statement on the vaccination of 12–15-year-olds is “absurd.”

A statement continued: “The GSD has encouraged the vaccination of vulnerable children and the adult population. The scientific recommendations for that are overwhelming. All GSD MPs are vaccinated.

“In the case of non-vulnerable 12–15-year-olds the point we made yesterday is that the highest body tasked with making scientific recommendations in the United Kingdom - the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has not recommended vaccination. Again in doing so we are consistently pointing to that advice. That is not “asking untrained people to make their own minds on complex science” as the TG Leader absurdly suggests. It is to point to the advice of the UK’s top people on “complex science” so that people in Gibraltar are aware of it. Would Ms Hassan Nahon prefer to ignore that advice?

“Only yesterday the UK Government accepted the advice of the JCVI in deciding to roll-out COVID booster vaccines for the general population.

“The TG press release that brands the GSD as pandering to conspiracy theorists or compromising Gibraltar’s capacity to deal with the COVID pandemic is hysterical, authoritarian and frankly an unbelievable tirade. It is worthy only of a Party that has failed to understand the actual advice given or which wants to say anything on the subject irrespective of its recklessness. Surely it is important and responsible to analyse all the highest recommendations that emanate from the JCVI or is TG suggesting this should be ignored? The JCVI advises the UK Government on vaccination and immunisation. It is made up of 16 of the country’s top Professors and doctors who are all experts in clinical medicine, immunisation, vaccines or public health. These are generally drawn from leading universities, research institutes or Public Health England. It has access to the highest advice available in the issue of vaccination.

“The GSD press release on the subject of non-vulnerable 12–15-year-olds was measured and referred to the JCVI advice given that it is the relevant body to consider. We appreciate that the UK Government as indeed the Gibraltar Government have decided to offer the vaccine to all 12--15-year-olds for wider reasons. All we said in our communique yesterday was that the JCVI advice should be factored in when ultimately parents and children decide on whether they wish to take up that offer. That is to promote an act of informed consent. It is important to place all the relevant information in front of people when taking this decision.

“While we encourage adult and vulnerable children vaccination, we also understand that a small proportion of the population is not vaccinated either through choice or for medical reasons. We respect the rights of those who decide not to be vaccinated and have spoken out previously as to the inconsistent treatment of unvaccinated individuals. We will continue to do so as appropriate because individual freedoms need protecting. This is not about pandering to any sector of the population. That is not the GSD style. We will say it like it is and how we see it. Nor has this got anything to do with the issue of whether non-vulnerable 12–15-year-olds should be vaccinated. In relation to that listening to the JCVI is hardly a populist anti-vaxxer conspiracy.”