Fluoride Action Network

Oberon. Number crunch: Council challenged on fluoride survey and figures

Source: Oberon Review | March 2nd, 2019
Location: Australia

A GALLERY packed with fluoridation opponents at Oberon Council’s most recent ordinary meeting heard Hardy Draheim make a presentation questioning how the numbers were crunched before council decided to add fluoride to the town’s reticulated water supply.

Mr Draheim challenged the figures supplied to council from a survey conducted by the Social Research Centre (SRC) on behalf of – and paid for by – NSW Health to gauge the Oberon community’s views on the fluoridation of the town water supply.

“Council alleged the survey was the only one to be trusted as SRC is professional, reputable and impartial, showing the only true representation,” Mr Draheim said.

“Residents living out of town using tank or bore water will never receive one drop of fluoridated water, yet they were used to manipulate council: 132 out-of-town respondents not connected to the RWS [reticulated water supply] were allowed to vote [in favour].”

Those out-of-town residents, he said, were used to decide on behalf of 2165 town residents.

“The 2018 door-to-door community-led survey conducted by anti-fluoride members showed 445 signatures opposing fluoridation, with 428 living in town on the RWS,” Mr Draheim said.

“Council dismissed this petition on minor detail, but an analysis should have been done and a summary of all data presented before council brought the issues to a rushed climax for a decision last July.

“The SRC survey summary said there was 371 participants, but no figures were given as to actually how many were contacted. Why wasn’t all the data given to council?

“The survey summary even said the phone poll covered 2580, 2787 and 2795 postcodes, Hill End to Lake Bathurst.”

Mr Draheim went on to say that rushing the decision was a poor choice.

“Rushing this decision has caused considerable community disharmony,” he said.

“I’m looking for due process and transparency. Even a small amount of doubt is always right.”

*Original article online at https://www.oberonreview.com.au/story/5924239/number-crunch-council-challenged-on-fluoride-survey-and-figures/?cs=12