A concerning trend is starting to take shape in the UK, in which anti-vaxxers have started to proclaim themselves as vegans in order to forgo potential compulsory vaccines. It especially started getting rampant after legal experts warned that companies could not force employees to get jabbed if they were vegan.
In 2020, the tribunal ruled ethical veganism as a protected status and because the production of COVID vaccines go through animal testing, many believe that vaccination goes against their beliefs.
Anti-vaxxers going vegan
However, anti-vaxxers who are not vegans have been taking advantage of this opportunity and they’ve started declaring their switch to the plant-based diet on social media. Laurence Fox, a right-wing political activist who was a strong critic of the lockdown restrictions, has been one of the many who have taken to Twitter to address his diet change. He tweeted:
I will only eat plant-based food and medium-rare sirloin steaks. And chicken, pork scratchings and salami.
While his tweet may be just a joke, it is a cause for concern that anti-vaxxers may use this as an excuse to skip out on getting jabbed if and when it becomes mandatory. To counter this growing online trend, vegan and animal rights activists have been trying to encourage both anti-vaxxers and vegans to get their vaccines if they are eligible.
Why vegans should still get vaccinated
Dr. Julia Baines, author at PETA UK and science policy advisor told Euronews that she has gotten both her jabs despite being vegan. She argues that because testing on animals is a legal requirement in many countries, ‘refusing to take medicine on ethical grounds will not help the animals who have already been used in tests.’ She added:
What we need is a change in the law so that animals are no longer required to suffer in tests, which is why PETA and our international affiliates are working with government agencies in the UK and abroad to draw attention to the scientific failings of tests on animals and promoting the development, use, and acceptance of modern, non-animal testing methods.