Facebook should ban sick baby taunts - says Sheffield mum

Julie Wagland and son Billy
Julie Wagland and son Billy
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A MUM whose toddler son nearly died while battling leukaemia was sent cruel online taunts by ‘sick’ members of a social networking page.

Julie Wagland’s little son Billy, aged 22 months, came close to death after been diagnosed with the cancer last year.

And when she came across a controversial fan page on Facebook entitled ‘dead baby jokes’, Julie left a message saying she was offended.

But after receiving a mocking reply Julie is now urging readers to report the page - which has more than 50,000 members - and calling for it to be banned. She also wants people to support petitions calling for its removal.

Julie, of Hasland Crescent, Lowedges, Sheffield, said: “I received a reply back saying how hilarious they thought it was that my baby nearly died and asking if I tried to eat him.

“I was shocked - I think it’s really disgusting.

“Looking at the page I am not the first person this has happened to.

“The petition to ban this group has got 22,000 signatures and it still hasn’t been banned.

“People can taunt those with sick children and parents who are grieving because it is apparently freedom of speech.”

Billy is still having chemotherapy but should get the all-clear in October after bravely fighting several bouts of septicaemia.

Through his time in hospital Julie also knows grieving parents who lost their children to the disease.

Julie, a social worker, added: “They said he didn’t have anything left to fight it, but he did battle back somehow.

“I don’t think there is a word to describe people who can laugh about babies dying - it’s not even in the dictionary. I think they are very sick - I don’t think this is a joke.”

A Facebook spokesman said the page does not violate any policies which strike a balance between freedom of expression and a safe environment, although it may be offensive to some people.