Senior government figures have resisted calls to condemn Liberal MP Craig Kelly for declaring compulsory mask wearing in schools would be “a crime” and a “form of child abuse”.
- Liberal MP Craig Kelly has repeatedly shared misleading medical advice on social media about COVID-19
- Michael McCormack said while he did not agree with his colleague’s comments on masks, they were a matter for Mr Kelly
- Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said Australians should follow official advice
The federal backbencher has repeatedly shared misleading information about COVID-19 and on Tuesday used his Facebook account to post a German study examining the impacts of masks on adolescents and children.
The study, which is a preprint — meaning it has been shared publicly before being peer reviewed — examined potential side-effects of wearing a mask, finding some children reported headaches, irritability and fatigue.
“What other conclusion can be drawn from this first-ever published study, other than that forcing children to wear masks is causing massive physical and psychological harm — that can only be defined as child abuse” Mr Kelly wrote on Facebook.
The post was shared more than 900 times and attracted more than 2,000 likes.
“I’m not aware of a single published study that shows a single benefit from forcing children to wear masks,” the post said.
“If we believe in following the science and the evidence, it would be a crime, a form of child abuse, to make it compulsory for any Australian child to have to wear a mask at school in the coming year.”