‘Deeply concerning’ fake virus signs target kids
Fake signs purportedly from a council urging children to use play equipment as their "best defence" against coronavirus have been plastered at parks in Melbourne's southeast.
The signs - which even include a phony signature from the local mayor - claim it's OK for children to use play equipment even though playgrounds are shut.
They've appeared over the weekend in the Kingston Council area, which covers suburbs from Cheltenham to Carrum.
Signs have so far been found at Chelsea and Bonbeach.
Kingston Mayor Georgina Oxley told the Herald Sun: "It's disgraceful and it's outrageous."
"It's putting our community's lives at risk and especially young people and children in our community,'' Cr Oxley said.
"Our parks are closed for good reason and that is to keep everyone safe."
Council workers were scouring parks across the municipality for any more fake signs.
"This virus has unfortunately led to tragedies,'' Cr Oxley said.
"For anyone to go out and do that in the community is absolutely disgusting.
"It looks like it's an official sign."
The signs, which were laminated and included the Kingston Council logo, are headlined "PARK OPEN".
"Kingston City Council recognizes (sic) that a strong immune system is best defence against the current Covid19 threat and children are the safety community group,'' it reads.
"Your children can best maintain a healthy immune system by the following: Regular vitamin D, Regular Physical Activity, Healthy eating habits"
Mordialloc state Labor MP Tim Richardson said the signs were of huge concern, with one found at popular Bicentennial Park in Chelsea.
"People have thought it was official and have used the park over the weekend,'' Mr Richardson said.
"It's misleading people.
"The motivations are sickening.
"This is a risk to health and safety during a global pandemic.
"It's deeply concerning.
"Playgrounds are not open."