At this moment, hundreds of communities around the fluoridating world (particularly, United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, Israel, New Zealand, the UK) have groups of local residents, community leaders, along with public health and scientific professionals organizing to battle this unethical and reckless practice at the local level. The number of campaigns and concerned citizens continues to rise to an unprecedented level, as the number of communities adding fluoridation chemicals decreases slowly but steadily.
The trend is clear, government fluoridation statistics show an overall decrease in the number of fluoridating communities in the U.S. This means that with your help, our movement has stopped the behemoth fluoridation-lobby in their tracks, and have reversed the expansion of fluoridation that has been occurring since the ‘40s.
The most recent evidence of this trend was the one-sided referendum success at the beginning of November. Three communities had votes on fluoridation, and all three voted overwhelmingly to end the practice.
In Buda, Texas a well-organized coalition of resident groups used yard signs, community education, and grassroots campaigning to win 69% of the vote. On the East Coast, one concerned resident of Ocilla, Georgia successfully collected enough signatures to get a question on the ballot, then educated her community using social media and word-of-mouth, resulting in 69% voting fluoride out. And a multi-year effort by a coalition of resident groups in Port Angeles, Washington to force the city council to end fluoridation after they ignored a non-binding vote in 2015, resulted in a win with 55% of the vote.
Before I cover the data and details about this–hopefully–critical turning point for the future of fluoridation, here’s an update on our fundraising:
Our current totals are $14,433 from 28 donors. This includes $13,326 raised in November from 8 people and one foundation. Paul writes, “What is striking about the donations yesterday is that they came in from a very wide geographical distribution. In the US we had contributions from CO, AZ, MD, MA, PA, NC, FL, NY, OH, WV, IN and NV and worldwide from Japan, Australia, New Zealand and the UK. This underlines Stuart’s comment that this issue is bubbling away in many different places.”
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Working together, our remarkable network may have reached a turning-point. Center for Disease Control and Disease Prevention (Oral Health Division) fluoridation statistics for the U.S. have been released for 2014, and they show exactly why the fluoridation-lobby has been pouring more money and resources into promoting thispractice and fighting our efforts: WE ARE WINNING!
For the first time in nearly 40 years the percentage of the U.S. population served by community water systems receiving fluoridated water decreased, from 74.6% to 74.4%. The percentage of the U.S. population receiving so-called “optimally fluoridated”water (natural and artificial) also decreased, from 67.1% to 66.3%, as did the number of water systems adding fluoride chemicals.
Momentum Continues to Build Thanks to You
Since the CDC’s 2014 stats were collected, the momentum has only continued to trend in our favor. 79% of community or council votes on fluoridation in the U.S. were prompted by residents or officials calling for an end to fluoridation, not for implementation of it. In fact, data shows that for every attempt by the fluoride-lobby to initiate fluoridation, there are 4 attempts by communities working to stop it...and a majority of them have succeeded.
Since 1990, more than 500 communities throughout the world have ended existing fluoridation programs or rejected new efforts to fluoridate either by council vote or citizen referendum. In 2017 alone, we’ve confirmed that at least 17 communities with a combined population of approximately 500,000 voted to prohibit fluoridation. This brings the number of victories since 2010 to at least 236 communities, representing approximately 7 million people.
Almost all of these victories were the result of citizens organizing local campaigns and voicing their opposition to public officials, with many working in coordination with FAN or using our materials to educate their neighbors and local decision-makers about the serious health risks associated with the practice. Some of 2017’s victories included:
- Curacao (pop. 160,000)
- Greater Johnstown Water District, Pennsylvania (52,657)
- Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada (72,000)
- Port Angeles, Washington (19,038)
- Hinchinbrook Shire Council, Queensland, Australia (12,500)
- Bedford Regional Water District, Virginia (25,000)
- See the full list of victories
It’s crucial we maintain this momentum, so we can ensure that fluoridation becomes a thing of the past for you and the world. With your generous financial help, we can make ending water fluoridation the greatest public health achievement of the 21st Century.
Monday, we will provide the reasons why government officials opposed fluoridation in 2017.
Fluoride Action Network