A dedicated and life-saving paramedic has spoken out after a legion of trolls targeted her after she posted a picture of herself on her private social media account in full uniform wearing makeup.
Some of the bizarre comments which were left on her tweet even apportioned blame to the wearing of makeup for COVID-19 related deaths.
The trolling started back in March of this year after Laura Heath posted a picture of herself with the caption ‘proud to be a paramedic’.
The tweet attracted over 80k ‘likes’, 3k re-tweets, and over 3k comments.
But it was not long before the flocks of anonymous trolls started to target Laura.
The positive comments far outnumbered the negative ones with loads of people showing support for Laura, including the vast majority of her 45k followers.
In the days following the post, Laura was also the victim of verbal abuse. Following the ordeal, she tweeted:
‘Last night yet again, I experienced abuse at work because of the way I look. A man thought it was appropriate to act inappropriately and also tr to take photos of me to save on his phone.
‘As a young female it makes me feel uncomfortable and it has got to stop’.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, like thousands of her colleagues, Laura has risked her own life to treat the sick and the vulnerable; repeatedly exposing herself to the deadly virus to care for strangers.
But the attention-seeking trolls have still had Laura in their sights, with various fake accounts being set up to mimic Laura.
Back in April, at the height of the pandemic in the UK, Laura posted a picture of herself showing the side-effects of continuously having to wear PPE.
In a tweet posted on 12th April, Laura said:
‘This photo is unedited, no makeup and real as opposed to those you normally see of me.
‘My skin is the worse it’s ever been after continuously wearing PPE.
‘I am having to watch people die from this virus every time I come to work. I am tired and I am broken like most of the NHS’.
Laura has also faced her own battles with mental health.
When she was younger, she was bullied by the same sort of coward that meanders through social media, looking for people to troll.
She was also sexually assaulted when she was just 10-years-old, and Laura found her mum unconscious after she tried to take her own life.
In one of her tweets, Laura said:
‘When I was younger, I was bullied, sexually assaulted, and when I was 10, I found my mum unconscious as she attempted to take her own life.
‘I suffer with PTSD, but most importantly I survived it… and so can you.
‘I have never opened up to such a large audience before but because of the recent support I’ve had from twitter I feel able. I need people to realise you can get better whatever trauma you’ve experience and life does get easier’.
Despite her negative experiences with trolls on social media, Laura now acts as a beacon of light and positivity for anyone, including her colleagues, who might be experiencing difficulties with their mental health.
In another tweet, Laura said:
‘Someone just said to me “I don’t look old enough to suffer with mental health.”
‘Can I just highlight that YOUNG.PEOPLE.STRUGGLE.TOO mental health does not care about your age’.
In recent days, parts of the mainstream media have picked up on Laura’s story.
In an interview with ‘Good Morning Britain’ Laura explained that the picture that had attracted so many trolls had been posted after she experienced a dip in her self-confidence as a result of the pain and suffering she was witnessing owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.