OUR SAY: Why involve council on fluoride?

I HAVE never understood the logic in the Newman Government pushing decision-making over fluoride onto local councils.

While the councils may control water supply, to me, fluoride is primarily a health issue, and responsibility for it should fall squarely to the state government.

Local councils can and do attract many types of specialist - engineers, waste managers and so on.

But when it comes to matters of public health, it is stating the obvious to point out that the majority of experts would be found in the state system.

Decisions like whether to use fluoride or not are incredibly heated, and the 11 councillors who voted on the matter would have to balance a variety of health reports with the often strongly-voiced wishes of their electors.

It is the kind of situation that can easily lead to a vocal minority being loud enough to drown out rational decision-making.

The only way to avoid that is to have the decision made by a large panel of informed experts - or to hold a plebiscite, requiring every person to vote.

Now, it depends on whether you would put more trust in "experts" or your next-door neighbour as to which option would be preferable.



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