American environmental lawyer and activist Robert F Kennedy Jr was banned from Instagram on Wednesday after his repeated attempts at spreading anti-vaccine information. A spokesperson from Facebook, which owns Instagram, said, "We removed this account for repeatedly sharing debunked claims about the coronavirus or vaccines." Robert F Kennedy Jr is the nephew of former US President John F Kennedy.
According to CNN, he has long been lobbying against vaccines and urging the Congress to pardon parents from getting their children vaccinated. Kennedy's page on Facebook has over 300,000 followers. Ironically his own children have all been vaccinated.
Incidentally, Children's Health Defense, the NPO chaired by Kennedy was unavailable for comment on the ban.
At such a crucial time amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, misinformation against the vaccine could prove to be even more catastrophic. Robert's family members have publicly denounced his anti-vaccine campaign saying that he "is part of a misinformation campaign that's having heartbreaking — and deadly — consequences."
Facebook has previously been vocal about employing methods to reduce vaccine misinformation in the media. They have further said they would be working on this strictly in the near future as well.