AVSN: Polly Tommey Banned from Australia
On 7 August 2017, in a Facebook live video interview with a family, Polly Tommey coyly let slip that she had been banned from re-entering Australia for three years.
"Australia… is literally the worst country I've visited."
"…they confiscated my phone and they took photographs of all my emails…"
"…they also told me I'm banned from Australia for three years."
The next day, Tommey made a video statement about the incident, and advised she is yet to be informed of the reason for the ban. Unfortunately, this didn't stop media reports that the ban was due to her entering Australia on the wrong visa category.
Media also reported Suzanne Humphries had been banned but it's important to note that there was no evidence whatsoever to support that claim. It was, however, easy to infer the possibility Humphries had also been banned from Tommey's public statements about the incident.
The reason for Tommey's re-entry ban was finally made clear on 9 August via a We Are Vaxxed Facebook post that included two image excerpts of the letter Tommey received from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection formerly advising her of the ban:
Extract: letter from Immigration and Border Protection
Information because of which the grounds were considered to exist:
Open source information indicates that you are a prominent anti-vaccination activist in the Unites States of America. You recently visited Australia participating in delivering seminars at numerous locations about anti-vaccination and promoted an anti-vaccination film titled 'Vaxxed'
The following image shows the reason for the re-entry ban is that Tommey was found to satisfy the 'Power to cancel' visa requirement of Migration Act 1958 - Section 116, subsection (1)(e)(i).
Note: some people are misinterpreting the extract from the Act in Tommey's letter to mean there must also be four other reasons (a-d) for being banned. Tommey stated that subsection (1)(e)(i) was the only reason given by Immigration and she will publish the full letter (with personal info redacted) at a later date.
Extract: letter from Immigration and Border Protection
(e) the presence of its holder in Australia is or may be, or would or might be, a risk to:
(i) the health, safety or good order of the Australian community or a segment of the Australian
And you can rest assured that Tommey won't be visiting us again for at least three years, as a re-entry ban cannot be removed.
The importance of this action taken by our Department of Immigration and Border Protection cannot be over-stated. A legal precedent has been set that sends a clear message that Australia will not tolerate overseas anti-vaccination activists visiting our shores to spread fear and misinformation about vaccination.
It is my hope that this may also stop overseas chiropractors who hold strong anti-vaccination views from setting up shop in Australia. This cohort is by far the worst of anti-vaccination chiropractors in Australia.
As for Suzanne Humphries, despite social media awash with claims she was also banned, she has been deathly silent on the issue. I suspect she is waiting until after leaving New Zealand before confirming she has, in fact, also been banned.
Update: 11 Aug 2017
In the Facebook live video Australian Immigration - Setting the Record Straight Tommey states that Suzanne Humphries has not been banned.
Update: 12 Aug 2017
In breaking news, Polly Tommey was banned from Australia under terrorism legislation, according to Meryl Dorey. Ipso facto, Polly Tommey is a terrorist.
Polly Tommey is a terrorist, according to Meryl Dorey
Update: 14 Aug 2017
On 12 Aug 2017, Meryl Dorey again repeated the claim that Polly Tommey was banned from Australia under terrorism legislation. Incredibly, Dorey appears to even enjoy doing so.
has been given a three year ban,
under terrorism laws,
from entering Australia."
This ban will make Tommey's travel life miserable when going to a country that requires a visa or entry card. Being smeared with terrorism - in this current political climate - is no laughing matter. Meryl Dorey was the organiser of the AVSN Vaxxed tour in Australia, and is seen as one of Tommey's closest allies. Thanks to Dorey, Tommey being associated with "terrorism" is already gaining traction on social media. Words fail me trying to describe Dorey's narcissism and irresponsibility; who needs enemies when you've got Meryl Dorey at your back.
Let me repeat: Polly Tommey was banned under the Migration Act, NOT terrorism legislation (which is in the Criminal Code Act). I can't explain why Dorey thinks there is strategic value in associating her movement with terrorism; maybe anti-vaccination proponents who like to travel might give it a go. As for Dorey trashing Polly Tommey's reputation - and being highly amused doing so - it's just another day at the AVN.
Update: 19 Aug 2017
Yesterday, in a Facebook live video, Meryl Dorey once again stated that Polly Tommey was banned from Australia under terrorism legislation.
"I wanted to just update you all on the Vaxxed tour. As I'm sure you're aware, Polly Tommey, on her way out of Australia, received a three year ban from entering Australia again because she was quote 'anti-vaccine'. And the legislation they used was terrorism legislation. So now being considered anti-vaccine, which is anyone who has reasonable scientific questions about the safety or effectiveness of vaccination, can be labelled as a terrorist, according to the Australian Immigration department. And I've been informed that this legislation under which Polly was banned has only ever been used once before; so she should be pretty impressed."
Just hours earlier, Polly Tommey was interviewed on Highwire with Del Bigtree. In this interview, we are shown one page of the letter Tommey received from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.
Letter from DIBP: visa cancelled under the Migration Act.
Notification of Cancellation under Section 128 of the Migration Act 1958
I wish to advise that your subclass 651 eVisitor visa granted on 27 May 2017 was cancelled on 8 August 2017 under section 128 of the Migration Act 1958…
Let the record show:
- the only person stating that Polly Tommey was banned under terrorism legislation is Meryl Dorey;
- the only person associating Polly Tommey with terrorism is Meryl Dorey;
- the only person associating the anti-vaccination movement with terrorism is Meryl Dorey.
Polly Tommey's failure in addressing Dorey's ongoing insistence that terrorism is involved leads me to assume Tommey is ok with this. If they think associating their movement with terrorism gives them some strategic advantage, well, good luck with that.
Update: 30 Aug 2017
In a video interview published 29 Aug 2017 Meryl Dorey again states Polly Tommey was banned under terrorism legislation. Dorey really does seem to be getting a kick out of trashing Tommey's reputation.
Posted: 10 Aug 2017
Last update: 30 Aug 2017