October 12, 2013
Latest Fluoride-Free Victories:
Columbia, Tennessee – On September 25th the Columbia Power and Water Systems Board of Public Utilities voted 3-2 to discontinue fluoridation of the drinking water for the city’s approximately 35,000 residents. The vote came after months of deliberation and review of over 200 pages of documents, studies, and reports submitted by the public. According to one water board member who also sits on the city council, “his research of fluoridation showed the chemical is hazardous for consumers who ingest it, as well as being dangerous for employees who handle it.”
Tecumseth, Ontario – On September 30th, councilors in New Tecumseth voted 7-3 to end 40 years of fluoridation for the town of Tottenham’s 5,000 residents. Prior to this vote, councilors approved a plebiscite during the October 2014 election, which will ask voters in Alliston, Beeton, and Tottenham if they want fluoridation. In the meantime, the fluoride will be flushed from the water supply.
Davis City, California – On October 1st, the Davis city council soundly rejected fluoridation by a vote of 4-1. The proposal would have cost $2 million to implement, plus an additional $300,000 annually in chemical costs for the city with 66,000 residents. Councilors stated that opposition to fluoridation was ten times greater then support for the practice amongst the public.
New Zealand -- The New Zealand Advertising Standards Authority recently ruled that a pro-fluoridation advertisement from a local dentist made exaggerated claims about fluoridation that could not be proved and therefore must be removed. Harley Dentistry claimed in their ad, "water fluoridation reduces decay by 20 per cent in our most vulnerable people, our children and those on lower incomes." Harley Dentistry was unable to provide evidence proving the claim, putting them in violation of New Zealand’s advertising code of ethics. You can read the full Advertising Standards Authority decision here.
The Bad News:
Unfortunately, this week there were two significant loses for the fluoride-free community. The first occurred on October 8th, when city councilors in Brooksville, Florida voted 4-1 to return fluoride to the drinking water, two years after they had voted to end the practice. This week’s vote was not the result of a science-based campaign, but the result of a misleading pro-fluoride intimidation campaign led by the Florida Department of Health, a handful of regional dentists, and the Tampa Bay Times. The councilors and Mayor who opposed fluoridation were regularly attacked and ridiculed by the Tampa Bay Times, their affiliated newspapers, and Palm Harbor dentist Johnny Johnson. When the council invited Paul Connett to debate Johnny Johnson, not only did Johnson withdrawal from the debate, but Dr. Connett was unfairly criticized and attacked by the local media for his presentation, and was repeatedly denied an opportunity to have a response published. In the end, the council's decision was less about science and more about keeping the Tampa Bay Times from bullying them from office. (There will be more coverage of the Brooksville story in an upcoming bulletin)
The second setback was in the Whakatane Region of New Zealand, where a majority of citizens in three communities voted in favor of fluoridation in a non-binding referendum. Earlier this year, Hamilton Councilors held a tribunal to study fluoridation. After hearing expert testimony on both sides of the issue, and reviewing hundreds of pages of research on fluoride, the tribunal voted 7-1 to oppose fluoridation. In response, the pro-fluoride lobby--including the taxpayer funded district health board--gathered enough petition signatures to force a referendum on the issue. They then spent tens of thousands of dollars on a propaganda campaign that included banners, billboards, and ads in all media formats, which also helped them secure the support of most of the local editiroal boards and newspaper staff. This resulted in a very one-sided and unscientific "debate" of fluoridation prior to the low turnout vote.
The referendum vote is non-binding, so the fight is far from over in Whakatane. We will be providing in-depth coverage of the Whakatane campaign in an upcoming bulletin.
More than 9,700 people have signed this petition to Stop Water Fluoridation, and the number continues to rise. Which one of you will be number 10,000? Please sign and share this important petition.
SIGN THE PETITION
Irish Fluoridation Report Suppressed by Government
“The practice of water fluoridation should end immediately. All of the available evidence suggests that not only will this lead to a marked reduction in fluorosis but that there would not be a significant rise in dental caries.”
This was the recommendation to the Joint committee on Health and Children in the Irish parliament in 2007 when the committee was holding special hearings on water fluoridation. The 90-page report authored by the former Irish Minister for the Environment, John Gormley, contained analysis of all available research on fluoride at the time, and based it’s final recommendations on expert testimony presented during the hearings.
The report states: “The Department of Health's assessment of the overwhelming benefits of water fluoridation is not justified…we believe on the basis of the international studies there would be no long-term increase in dental decay if fluoride were not added to Irish drinking water…we note that dental health has improved to the same degree in countries where there is no water fluoridation. While positive aspects of fluoridation have been over-stated, the growing negative impact has not been properly recognized…the Committee is disappointed and alarmed that no general health studies have ever been carried out, particularly considering that four in ten 15 year olds are now affected by fluorosis.”
However, instead of acting on the report and ending fluoridation, the committee rejected the report and suppressed it’s contents for six years until a copy was made public only weeks ago. Clearly, this is one of the most egregious examples of the truth about fluoridation being hidden by a powerful minority that supports the practice. It is obvious that the pro-fluoride lobby is more interested in protecting fluoridation policy and their reputations then they are in protecting the public’s health.
-Read the full report
-Read the groundbreaking interview with the Report’s Author, John Gormley
FAN, Campaign Manager