Today was the Safe Water Campaign of Gloucestershire's AGM and over 20 people came to hear Stephen Peckham from 'Hampshire Against Fluoridation' talk at The School of Art and Science, Lansdown.
Photos: Stephen talking then below some of the audience and Rob and Jehanne playing Brown Spotted Teeth
Like previous AGMs we had our introductory song from Rob and Jehanne Mehta - Brown Spotted Teeth - we also elected officers - I've now stepped down from Secretary after quite a number of years - I will stay involved but we now have a new committee established.
Anyway Stephen talked about what maybe imposed on us here in Glos and how they fought the campaign against water fluoridation in Hampshire. Amazingly despite massive opposition for fluoridation there, including from Hampshire County Council and other Councils, the Health Authority still unanimously voted for fluoridating their water supply.
The latest news is that Hampshire campaigners have won the right for Southampton City Council to discuss fluoridation again at Court Leet - see here - that Council was the only body that supported fluoridation and the Health Authority have repeatedly quoted them despite all others opposing.....we are hoping that councillors who voted for fluoridation there might reconsider now that they know the polls came out so against fluoridation. The results of that will be known within 2 months and will hopefully be useful for the judicial review.....
Yes the other news is that the go-ahead has been given for a judicial review - see here - it should happen Jan or Feb next year. This is to look at the process - when MPs voted they clearly wanted public views to be taken into account yet the advice from theDepartment of Health ignored this and so the Health Authority there can ignore their own consultations showing the public don't want water fluoridated. We'll see - we are all hoping commonsense will prevail. It is utterly outrageous that the health authority can dismiss the views of the population and elected bodies in such a fashion.
Stephen's talk was wonderfully informative and knowledgeable - and without any sensation or nonsense that some campaigners occasionally get carried away with - he covered stuff like the York Review and their clear statements that it could not say whether fluoride was safe or effective - yet this is what health folk claim the York review said - amazingly it is the only review that the authors have had on occasions to issue statements saying the reviews findings were being misused.
Anyway it is late now but we learnt much from Hampshire's experiences and hope to ensure that there is no way that the people of Gloucestershire get compulsorily medicated with fluoridated tap water in the future. At our next meeting we will be looking at the next steps we need to take - join us - we need the help to build an effective campaign - call on 01453 763943 for more info.