WARRNAMBOOL’S doctors and dentists look set to snub tomorrow night’s fluoride forum.
Organisers have not received any responses from the health professionals about the think-tank with international anti-fluoride expert Dr Paul Connett.
“It is quite troubling and concerning…It is pretty ordinary, given it is the doctors’ and dentists’ job to look after residents’ health,” co-organiser Peter Sycopoulis said.
The rebuff comes as the city council has also ruled out meeting with Dr Connett and fellow anti-fluoride campaigner, past Australian Dental Association state president Andrew Harms.
About 500 of the city’s health and community leaders have been personally invited to the event, with other professionals welcome to attend.
Local anti-fluoride lobbyists hope the forum will wield some influence in their fight to block the fluoridation of Warrnambool’s public water supply.
Its ability to create ripples of dissent will be limited if the health sector boycotts the discussion.
South West Healthcare boss John Krygger denied there was any edict from the hospital supporting a boycott.
Through a spokeswoman, he told The Standard he was undecided about whether he would attend the meeting.
How many city council representatives will attend is also unknown, with chief executive Lindsay Merritt refusing to be drawn.
However, local anti-fluoride advocates have confirmed that the council was unable to commit to a private meeting with Dr Connett and Dr Harms.
Mr Sycopoulis hopes the inability of the council to meet the delegation is not an omen of its intention to avoid the forum. “If they are going to snub us again, that is just another black mark in their book,” he said.