No, the anti-vaxxer flyer filled with conspiracy theories received by several Chilliwack residents did not come from Chilliwack-Hope MP Mark Strahl.
A number of residents complained to The Progress about the double-sided yellow flyer received on or around Nov. 26 last week that a number of people believed came from Strahl.
While not wanting to amplify the disinformation presented on the flyer, Strahl’s office received several inquiries and complaints so he decided to clear the air.
“It has come to my attention that an individual from Chilliwack-Hope has paid Canada Post to deliver an unaddressed yellow mail flyer on vaccines and has put my name at the bottom of it to make it appear as though it is from my office,” Strahl said in a statement posted on Facebook.
“This flyer has nothing to do with me or my office and I do not agree with its contents. The message in the flyer does not deserve to be amplified, however, given the number of people who have contacted my office about it already, I have decided to provide this clarification. Please put this misleading flyer into the nearest recycling bin as I have done.”
Some copies of the flyer had a name near the bottom of the message, the name of an individual who has been spamming Strahl and The Progress for over a year with outlandish anti-vaxxer, anti-science conspiracies.
Under the individual’s name and a bold line at the bottom it said “Mark Strahl” in bold telling readers to write to him. It included his constituency mailing address, leading some who received it to mistakenly think it came from Strahl’s office.
At least one person who complained about the flyer also said some postal carriers were not happy to distribute the flyers that claim the COVID-19 vaccinations are poisons, among other bits of misinformation.
Asked about Canada Post’s policy, a spokesperson said the Crown corporation has no choice.
“As Canada’s postal administration, Canada Post is obligated to deliver any mail that is properly prepared and paid for, unless it is contrary to postal regulations (non-mailable matter),” said Nicole Lecompte with Canada Post media relations.
The definition of non-mailable matter includes: products that could cause injury or damage; packaging with modified stamps; and certain categories of sexually explicit material.
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