Parents are being warned they’re risking their kids’ lives by refusing to vaccinate them against childhood illnesses.
The public service announcement, released by the New York State Department of Health, features the moving testimony of a mom whose five-year-old son died from the flu. But, is it too much?Serese Marotta perches on her dead son Joseph‘s bed and stares into the camera, describing how she has kept his belongings, 18 months after he died from the flu.
“We’ve made the decision to keep all his things the way they were when he was here last,” the mourning mom says.
Her words are followed by a black and white message that reads, “Every year, unvaccinated children die from preventable diseases. Get your kids all their recommended vaccines and flu shots.”
The candid, stark message, has upset some parents — but advocates insists it’s more important than ever to get the message across to moms and dads. Parents turned their backs on vaccines following unfounded claims childhood vaccines can cause autism — and health officials fear too many kids are falling through the cracks.
A New York Health Department spokesperson tells the New York Post, “Thought it is a difficult message, the focus groups revealed a need to make parents aware that children who are not vaccinated can have serious illness and some may die.”
What do you think about the PSA, HollyMoms? Is it too much — or are scare tactics the best way to make an important point?
— Ian Garland