PRESS RELEASE - 9/4/2002

Minister Martin has recently taken on the mantle of investigating the developing scandal of sex abuse and the Church. But Micheal Martin is swamped in his own health scandal. He set up the Forum on Fluoridation in May 2000 because of growing public concern about the practice of mandatory water fluoridation. However, the forum’s report is now six months overdue. Why? Two new documents have come to light, which may explain the unwillingness of a Health Minister to reveal a controversial outcome before a general election.

The first document is a comprehensive expose of the membership of the Forum on Fluoridation.(1) A forum, Minister Martin reassured us, would "be objective and independent" and he repeatedly referred to "the open nature of the Forum", however the document details a web of pro-fluoride bias, which possibly borders on corruption!

The Forum’s website asks ‘Is there an independent Chairman?,’ and promptly kills the suspense by declaring unequivocally; ‘Yes. The Chairman of the Forum is Professor Pat Fottrell, former President of the National University of Ireland, Galway, who has extensive relevant knowledge and experience but who is not engaged in any way with the practice of fluoridation.’(2) But, Professor Fottrell is connected to the practice of fluoridation.

He was a Board Member of Galway University Foundation along with Thomas McDonogh who is chairman of the McDonogh Group.(3) The McDonogh Group owns Albatros Fertilizers Ltd., New Ross, Co. Wexford, the suppliers of the fluoridating agent, hydrofluosilicic acid.(4) In 1998, Albators received £340,226.00 from the Eastern Regional Health Authority (ERHA) for supply of this fertiliser waste product to all the water treatment plants in Ireland. This chemical fluoride is pumped into our drinking water at the rate of 2000 gallons daily. As if to eliminate any possibility that these two Board members may be unknown to each other, in June 2000 (one month after Forum announced) Dr. Fottrell was among staff members who proposed Thomas McDonogh for an honorary doctorate (LL.D.) at Galway University.(5) Fluoride Free Water feels that this constitutes an undeclared competing interest for the chairperson of the fluoridation forum.

The document continues by demonstrating the connections of some academics with the fluoride industry with particular reference to multi-national companies e.g. Colgate, Unilever and SmithKline Beecham. These fluoride toothpaste manufactures are responsible for nearly 90% of toothpaste sales in Ireland. It also makes a mockery of several members protestations that they are "proceeding on an open-minded basis". Moreover, it details other members’ contradictions, misinformation and downright hypocrisy.

In conclusion, after this shocking analysis of the interests and associations of several Forum members, it is difficult to affirm that they are all individually objective, independent or open. The question must be asked, are they in their privileged positions within the Forum to protect ‘public health’ or to ‘protect public health policy’?

The second document further confirms the continuing scandal of water fluoridation in Ireland. This document accessed under the Freedom of Information Act 1997 shows that the Food Safety Authority agreed last October that bottle-feeding infants were being overdosed with fluoride.(6) "The Scientific Committee agrees that the precautionary principle should apply and recommends that infant formula should not be reconstituted with fluoridated tap water".

However, this is still not public knowledge. Why???

Dr. Don Mac Auley, advisor to Fluoride Free Water, commented, "fluoridation is a scandal that affects us all. It is now time for the Irish public to stand up and say ‘enough is enough’. A pro-fluoride forum, with all its suspect connections, is not going to stop fluoridation. A Food Safety Authority recommendation, which has been buried, is not going to stop fluoridation. A Minister of Health, who is more interested in playing politics and protecting policy, is not going to stop fluoridation. There is an election coming and only public pressure can stop fluoridation. We need to ask our politicians when will the water be safe for our children to drink? For our children's safety when will they stop fluoridation? Forty years of mass-medication must end now".

For further information contact Dr. Don Mac Auley 046 21203.