Subscribe to our newsletter for exclusive editorial emails from the Byline Times Team.
Concerns have been raised regarding the decision to include a controversial campaign group in a forum run by the government’s official Covid Inquiry.
The Covid inquiry’s Children and Young People’s organisations forum’s first meeting was held on 29 August. The purpose of this meeting was to share as much information as the Inquiry was able to at this stage about how it plans to research the impact of the pandemic on children and young people, and sought feedback from the organisations invited to attend. But it also included a group called UsForThem (UfT).
Previous reporting by Byline Times has highlighted UfT’s extensive political and lobbying links. UfT incorporated as a limited company in April 2021, so there are no accounts available for the first year of campaigning that allowed them to quickly establish a media platform and the support of a considerable number of Conservative MPs.
Don’t miss a story
Published at the end of 2022 UfT’ first year accounts showing they appear to be almost entirely self-funded rather than by the small donations typical of grassroots organisations. UfT are almost £5,000 in debt, however £11,000 of their credit is owed to the three directors, with only £450 owed to trade creditors. They also owe another creditor £1,800 however who the other creditors are is unknown as the company is exempt from audit.
Molly Kingsley, a founder of UfT, is on the Together Declaration’s Executive Board, which Byline Times has revealed is linked to the ULEZ protest and held an event on resisting “The Great Reset”.
The Great Reset Initiative is an economic recovery proposal drawn up by the World Economic Forum (WEF), but which has been latched onto by conspiracy theorists. Backers of the conspiracy theory claim it is a plan to build a dictatorial, socialist world government run by capitalists and politicians – “a secret cabal that is broadcasting its plan around the world”, as the BBC characterised it.
Kingsley is also an author for the Brownstone Institute which published a list of 101 people to blame for lockdown under the title “Who will be held responsible for this devastation?” with a picture of a guillotine.
On Boxing Day 2022, Kingsley retweeted a thread calling for a “Nuremberg 2” – an international tribunal into the Covid pandemic response, complete with images of Nazi war criminals which government officials were likened to.
She called it “incredible, brave and essential”. She also wrote an article in defence of Andrew Bridgen MP’s comments likening covid vaccines to the Holocaust that saw him thrown out of the Conservative Party, and has shared a number of claims by conspiracy theorist Naomi Wolf suggesting vaccines and masks were causing infertility and stillbirths.
When outlets like the BBC and Byline Times reported on disinformation being promoted by the Safer to Wait campaign, Molly Kingsley, a founding member of UfT denied any link between Safer to Wait and UfT, however a number of sources linking the organisations have emerged.
Other groups who have engaged with the inquiry but weren’t invited to the meeting will be questioning the inquiry’s response, particularly considering the track record of sharing controversial information on social media by UfT and its members – and their links to other organisations such as the Together Declaration, the Brownstone Institute and Safer To Wait (STW).
STW has previously suggested children could be given the unproven treatment ivermectin as an alternative to vaccination are a particular concern considering STW has teamed up with the EU chapter of Robert F Kennedy’s anti-vax Children’s Health Defence.
Allison Pearson, who according to Kingsley in her book on the pandemic was integral to the founding of UfT, wrote a piece for the Telegraph on 21 May this year, promoting the STW campaign and saying she had been alarmed when “Dr Ros Jones, a veteran consultant paediatrician who is spearheading the Safer To Wait campaign for the parents group UsForThem” said secondary students could be “jabbed as early as the end of the summer term.”
Jones was a media representative for UfT for over a year. She’s a member of the Health Advisory & Recovery Team (HART), a group of UK medical figures and campaigners trying to “widen the debate” on Covid vaccines.
HART and was the first name on the letter calling for children not to be vaccinated that launched the STW campaign and is promoted on UfT and HART’s website. Jones is also a spokesperson for the Children’s Covid Vaccine Advisory Group which includes a number of HART members.
When HART’s internal chat logs were leaked in 2021 they revealed how members of HART, UfT, and a number of other interlinked organisations prepared a campaign against child vaccination which led to the launch of STW. Another person named in the working group was former TV presenter Anna Brees.
In May 2021, Brees promoted STW in a post “the campaign is ready please direct message @UsforThemUK if you are a celebrity and feel children will die if they have this vaccine now you’ll regret not speaking out and your reputation is damaged. #SaferToWait.”
UfT were asked to clarify if Pearson was correct when she wrote that STW was set up on their behalf, however they didn’t respond.
ENJOYING THIS ARTICLE? HELP US TO PRODUCE MORE
Receive the monthly Byline Times newspaper and help to support fearless, independent journalism that breaks stories, shapes the agenda and holds power to account.
We’re not funded by a billionaire oligarch or an offshore hedge-fund. We rely on our readers to fund our journalism. If you like what we do, please subscribe.
Having been founded to oppose covid vaccinations in children, Safer To Wait is now expanding its campaigning to other vaccines. On 8 September STW launched a “HPV awareness campaign” alongside Children’s Health Defence’s (CHD) EU chapter.
CHD is the anti-vax organisation founded by Robert F Kennedy, who is listed as one of the most influential promoters of anti-vax disinformation in the Centre For Countering Digital Hate’s Disinformation Dozen report. He has previously said a statue should be erected of the disgraced Andrew Wakefield who falsely claimed the MMR jab caused autism.
Byline Times contacted the inquiry to ask by what criteria were UfT included. A spokesperson for the Inquiry said: “The independent UK Covid-19 Inquiry is investigating the UK’s pandemic response, finding out what happened and why. Chair Baroness Hallett has been clear that the Inquiry will investigate the impacts of the pandemic on children and young people. It is one of a number of topics which the Inquiry must investigate that are set out in our Terms of Reference.
“The Inquiry regularly meets with children and young people’s organisations to develop understanding of the work in this area. UsForThem has engaged with the Inquiry concerning children and young people’s experiences of the pandemic and has therefore been included in the Children and Young People Organisations forum, which engages with a wide range of groups representing a diverse range of opinion.”
UsForThem was contacted for comment for this piece.