Tuesday, 30 January 2001
Dáil Eireann Debate
622. Mrs. Owen asked the Minister for Health and Children the main points of the interim report of the Forum on Fluoridation which he set up in 2000 to review the fluoridation of public piped water supplies; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1506/01]
Minister for Health and Children (Mr. Martin): I established the Forum on Fluoridation in May 2000 with the following terms of reference: to review the fluoridation of public piped water supplies and the programme of research being undertaken on behalf of health boards in the area; and to report to me, as Minister for Health and Children.
On behalf of the Forum on Fluoridation its chairman, Professor Pat Fottrell, presented the forum's interim report to me on 20 December 2000. I have arranged for a copy of the interim report to be forwarded to the two Deputies.
The interim report gives details of the four meetings of the forum which were held from September 2000 – December 2000 inclusive. It highlights the forum's desire to maximise engagement with the views of members of the public and interested bodies; to this end, advertisements were placed in the national newspapers at the end of November 2000 inviting submissions from the public on the issues under discussion and it is hoped to run a series of radio advertisements to this effect shortly. It also stresses the forum's efforts to achieve balanced debate on the issues under discussion: two internationally renowned anti-fluoridation speakers gave presentations to the forum at a meeting which was held in October 2000 and further speakers have been invited. At the request of the forum, I recently appointed a member of the Irish Doctors' Environmental  Association as a representative of those with anti-fluoridation concerns.
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