Legal indemnity for Barwon Water against claims related to fluoridation left a community group in “shock” yesterday, according to a spokesperson.
David McRae said Barwon Water chairman Stephen Vaughan had revealed the indemnity in a meeting with representatives of Water Quality Australia.
“They have legal protection if things go wrong,” Mr McRae said.
“It was a shock that Barwon Water is already thinking about legal protection.”
Water Quality Australia arranged the meeting after a story in the Independent last month about Department of Human Services briefing the board on evidence of benefits from fluoridation.
Mr McRae said about 15 Barwon Water executives and board members attended yesterday’s meeting.
Water Quality Australia presented “scientific evidence” fluoridation had little or no impact on dental health and was linked to several diseases including bone cancer, he said.
Mr McRae said Water Quality Australia was pleased Barwon Water had agreed to hear the case against fluoridation. But he doubted the meeting would sway Barwon Water against fluoridation.
“They were non-committal about what they would do with the information we presented,” Mr McRae said.
Anti-fluoridation activists protested outside Barwon Water’s central Geelong headquarters soon after the meeting.
Barwon Association for Freedom from Fluoridation called a referendum on whether State Government should fluoridate the region when it connects Geelong to Melbourne’s fluoridated water in 2011.