What does Anti-vaxxer mean?

Someone who doesn’t support the use of vaccines

An anti-vaxxer is a person who opposes vaccinations. This opposition could be towards themselves or their children. This term gained significant attention during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021 when some people chose not to get vaccinated.

The term ‘anti-vaxxer’ originated from the anti-vaccination movement that took place in the 2000s and 2010s. This movement was fuelled by a small group of scientists and medical professionals who claimed that vaccines could cause autism and other harmful effects in children.

Despite the fact that these claims often came from poorly conducted studies or misinformation, an increasing number of people started refusing to vaccinate their children. Vaccines that have been refused by anti-vaxxers include ones for Hepatitis B, Polio, Flu, and Measles.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, many anti-vaxxers were celebrities like Pamela Anderson, alternative lifestyle enthusiasts, and religious fundamentalists. However, with the emergence of COVID-19, the reasons for refusing vaccines evolved. Many expressed concerns about the speed of vaccine development and potential side effects. Some even believed in conspiracy theories suggesting that the vaccine was part of a sinister government plot.

Example for using ‘Anti-vaxxer’ in a conversation

Hey, did you hear about the new COVID-19 vaccine?

Yeah, I did. But I don’t think I’ll be getting it.

Why not? It’s important for our safety and the safety of others.

I’m just not convinced it’s safe. I’m an anti-vaxxer.