U.K.’s Love Island star Katie Salmon is facing backlash and accusations that she’s against vaccinations after she posted a photo of herself wearing a bikini made of face masks with the caption “F the [syringe emoji]” Yahoo News first reported.
Salmon, who has since edited her Instagram post and disabled comments, first wrote on Sunday that she “heard they’re paying love island stars and influencers to promote track and trace.” She added: “Im here to tell you all. Stay healthy in your mind, meditate. Feed your body goodness. Trust your gut. And oh don’t watch the news.”
The OnlyFans creator appears to be wearing a bikini made of face masks in the photo. In her original post, Salmon wrote “F the [syringe emoji],” which some said referenced the COVID-19 vaccine.
One commenter wrote, “Are you saying…don’t take the vaccine?” Salmon replied that she is “not here to tell anybody what to do babe,” per Yahoo News.
“Why F the vaccine. Have it if you want it, don’t have it if you don’t want it,” another person wrote, according to the Daily Star. “No one should be made to feel bad for whatever decision they make.”
Salmon, who has over 257,000 followers, also received the comment, “My guess is by the end of the day u will delete this post xx.” Salmon responded that they “must be a new follower,” per the Daily Star.
“I’ve spoken openly about this the entire time,” Salmon wrote. “I really won’t be deleting my opinion or truth. When people are being paid to follow the crowd.”
In an Instagram Story post, Salmon added that she will “not be intimidated by anyone” and clarified that she “never said don’t take [syringe emoji],” per Yahoo News.
“I get people are angry and sad. I really do. I am too. I want to see my family and friends but am scared to return to a controlled UK,” Salmon wrote. “But I said it and I have said it from day (one). I just wanted to do it again after seeing people with massive following way bigger than mine are being PAID to promote control and danger.”
Although Salmon received backlash for her original post, some praised the influencer and said that it is “nice to see a woke influencer keep planting the seed,” per Yahoo Mail. Others commented on her bikini, calling it “stunning.”
The U.K. said it plans to offer the first dose of the vaccine to all adults by September and found that the number of people with COVID-19 in the U.K. has surpassed the number of those hospitalized, according to the Associated Press.
One Twitter user called Salmon a “moron,” and another wrote that wouldn’t “ask Katie Salmon about the COVID-19 vaccine” for the same reason they don’t ask for “fake tan” advice from U.K. chief medical officer Chris Whitty.
Salmon did not immediately respond to the Daily Dot’s request for comment.
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