Griffith University Skeptics and Freethinkers

Archive for January, 2011|Monthly archive page

10:23 Queensland Event this coming Saturday 05/02/11

In 10:23, GUSSF Events!, Helping our community., Homepathy, Responses to the media, Science on January 31, 2011 at 11:36 AM

This coming Saturday 05/02/11 at 10:23am we will be staging our mass ‘overdose’ of Homeopathic products as part of the International 10:23 Challenge 2011.

The goal of this international campaign is to raise awareness of the fact that Homeopathic preparations contain no active ingredients and have been repeatedly shown by the best available evidence to be no more effective than placebos. We aim to discuss this with passers-by in a friendly and approachable way with the goal of aiding consumers to make an informed choice..

We will be meeting up at 9.30am at the two large metal spheres between the Treasury Casino and the Brisbane Library across George Street from the Queen Street Mall. We’re meeting early in order to set up our homeopathic preparations as well as to hand out amongst participants the information sheets and flyers for interested passers-by, and prepare for the arrival of the media. The event will climax with the mass ‘overdose’ at 10:23am were volunteers will consume ridiculous amounts of pre-vetted homeopathic products in front of onlookers, the gathered media, and our own cameras for video to be promptly uploaded online.

I will have limited copies of the official 10:23 leaflet as well as printed copies of the Australian Medical Association (AMA) official position statement on Homeopathy, and a Guardian article by Edzard Ernst.

If everyone else would like to print out and bring along copies of the above to hand out then that would be very much appreciated!

For any media representatives I have prepared a small press kit of information including both the previously mentioned articles as well as Edzard Ernst’s Systematic Review of the Cochrane Database.

Volunteer’s are required to BYO Homeopathic products for the ‘overdose and remember safety first!

Please only use homeopathic products manufactured by a reputable pharmaceutical company and please don’t participate if you have any underlying health concerns.

There are a few cautions when it comes to the pills:
Lactose intolerance/diabetes – some participants may suffer ill effects of the pills, due to underlying illnesses. The amount of sugar in the tablets is quite low, about a teaspoonful, if that, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Clean homeopathy; be cautious, some homeopaths provide pills which are tainted or spiked with other ingredients. Minimise risk by using 30c ‘potency’ tablets. Investigate the pills ahead of time. If you can’t be 100% sure they’re safe, DON’T RISK IT.

Also could we need volunteers to provide:
a. Filming equipment that can be easily uploaded online
b. Someone willing and able to film and upload later that day.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact me at jayson.d.cooke@gmail.com

And I hope to see you all this coming Saturday.

Jayson D Cooke

Consumers in Queensland to stage homeopathic ‘overdose’.

In 10:23, GUSSF Events!, Helping our community., Homeopathy Awareness Week, Homepathy on January 17, 2011 at 12:14 PM

Consumer rights activists across Australia have today announced their intention to take a mass homeopathic ‘overdose’ next month, as part of a major global protest against the alternative remedies.

Protesters in Brisbane will swallow entire bottles of homeopathic pills on February 5th 2011, in a bid to raise public awareness of the fact that homeopathic ‘remedies’ are ineffective – putting pressure on pharmacists and health-care providers to ensure that products sold as medical treatments actually work.

Jayson Cooke, Queensland spokesman for the group, said: “It’s a terrible irony that Queenslanders seeking remedies are unwillingly purchasing products that are diluted to the point there is no active ingredient. The last thing Queensland residents need right now is to be wasting money on ineffective treatments. Most people aren’t aware that homeopathic pills are not ‘herbal’ or ‘natural’ – even homeopaths agree the pills actually contain nothing but sugar and water. We’re taking part in this protest to show that these so-called remedies are useless, and have no place in health-care today.”

Homeopaths and pharmacists should not be selling these sugar pills to people who are ill – these useless treatments are waste of time and money.”

The demonstration is being organized by local consumer advocacy groups as part of the 10:23 Campaign – a global protest against the homeopathic remedies originating in the United Kingdom. Similar events will be taking place in dozens of countries around the world, with protests announced in Germany, Hungary, Australia and Canada.

Michael Marshall, co-ordinator of the international campaign, said: “We intend to show that there is a growing feeling around the world that enough time and money has been wasted on homeopathic remedies.

In the two hundred years these treatments have existed, there has never been anything to suggest they work – and because they’re nothing but sugar and water, they couldn’t possibly do the things homeopaths claim they can do.

Tens of billions of dollers are spent every year around the world on these ineffective remedies, and when told what they really are, and how they’re made, most people are shocked these useless treatments are still able to be sold to an unsuspecting public”.

The 10:23 Campaign launched a year ago in the UK, with almost 400 protesters taking part in ‘overdose’ events across the country following an admission by Britain’s leading pharmacy that the pills are only sold because consumers will buy them, not because they are effective. The campaign is named after ‘Avogadro’s Number’ – a scientific constant which can be used to show homeopathic potions contain no active ingredients.

Though some would argue dispensing sugar pills may seem harmless, the endorsement of homeopathic potions by pharmacists and health-care providers has grave consequences. As well as undermining public trust in medicine and medical advice, patients with serious conditions can avoid seeking medical attention in the belief that homeopathy can treat their condition. An investigation by the BBC in January 2011 revealed that homeopaths were willing to give travelers ineffective homeopathic ‘preparations’ to use in place of real anti-malarial drugs, as well as ineffective homeopathic alternatives to vaccinations.

The 10:23 Campaign is organising protests in more than twenty three cities across ten counties on February 5th, 2011.

Local contact: Jayson Cooke / jayson.d.cooke@gmail.com / 0432 039 122
International contact: Michael Marshall / contact@1023.org.uk / +44 7841 134 309