“Child welfare organizations for months have felt the full weight of the coronavirus pandemic, navigating concerns about unreported abuse and ensuring their resources are available to at-risk children. But now, deeper into the outbreak, a new challenge is emerging that’s complicating their critical outreach efforts: the QAnon conspiracy theory. And it’s the behavior of those who follow the conspiracy theory – their supposed efforts to help abused children – that’s putting an increasing strain on the resources of actual child welfare groups.”
“The problem has become so severe that one such organization, Childhelp, says it had to set up an auto-response message on its crisis hotline to filter out QAnon callers after their name appeared in a QAnon meme. ‘If you have a hotline counselor who is taking time to speak to someone discussing a debunked conspiracy theory, there may be a child holding on the next line,’ Daphne Young, chief communications officer for Childhelp, told CNN. Beyond the calls to their hotline, Young explains that QAnon does ‘psychic damage to our work, which is the crying wolf phenomenon.’ ‘If you get people constantly crying about abuse day in and day out on social media that is not real – that is, everybody in Hollywood is part of a mass cabal drinking the blood of children, which is literally one of the conspiracy theories, drinking from their adrenal glands to stay young – this madness drowns out a child asking for help, a parent that needs resources,’ she said. ‘It drowns out anyone that’s a survivor who is trying to get in touch with us, and it’s not only ‘cries wolf,’ but I think that it also gives – in a strange way – it gives predators a little protection, because if everybody’s crying abuse, then maybe the guy down the street didn’t do it either'” – CNN.