After a drawn out campaign that has lasted nearly a decade, residents of Southampton and Hampshire County in the U.K. have successfully defeated plans by the U.K. government to add fluoride to the drinking water.
The plan to fluoridate Southampton, Rownhams, Eastleigh, Totton, and Netley was first put forward in 2007 by the UK government’s Strategic Health Authority (SHA). But this week, Public Health England, which is the new name of the national health department, released a public statement announcing that they would “take no further action to implement a proposed water fluoridation scheme that would have served around 160,000 Southampton residents and a further 35,000 people in neighboring parts of south west Hampshire.”
The federal agency blamed their fluoridation failure on opposition by both the Southampton City Council and the Hampshire County Council, as well opposition from residents and local campaign groups such as Hampshire Against Fluoridation. It was this brilliant group that persevered to educate and organize their community under the leadership of both John Spottiswoode and Stephen Peckham. They were helped by the reporters of the Daily Echo, a local newspaper, who did their job with professionalism and objectivity in reporting the issue throughout these many years. FAN will put out another bulletin that will detail the high drama and dirty politics of the health entities that played out in Southampton over the years.
As one county councilor said about the victory, “I think it’s good news for two reasons. Firstly it’s good for the people of Southampton and the surrounding area that would have received this medication via their tap water. But it’s also good news because I think it sends out a message nationally that public health bodies cannot impose their wishes open people without their consent”.
Congratulations residents and campaigners of Southampton and Hampshire County!
Victories in North America
Last week two more communities in the U. S. and Canada took action to end fluoridation.
First, the people of Richmond, Quebec sent a clear message to the government and to fluoridation proponents throughout Canada when 76% of residents voted to reject the practice after three years of debate. The vote is particularly important because it is the first referendum in Quebec on fluoridation and the first real survey of public opinion on the issue (only 2.7% of the Province is fluoridated). The results run contrary to the claims by pro-fluoridation public health experts who called opposition to the practice “a minority opinion” and claimed that polls showed 60% of residents were pro-fluoride prior to the vote.
Making this victory even more special is the fact that citizens overwhelmingly opposed fluoridation even knowing that the town would have to pay the Quebec government $127,000 after rejecting the practice since the water department already used their grant money to build the necessary fluoridation infrastructure. We have also been told that the campaign to keep Richmond fluoride-free was started three years ago by a group of concerned mothers, who despite strong opposition and many roadblocks, persevered and built a well-organized campaign that ultimately succeeded in making Richmond a safer place to raise children.
Also in Canada, John Sprovieri , the councilor who has championed the ending of fluoridation in Peel Region of Ontario successfully won his re-election campaign this week. He has been working alongside local fluoride-free advocacy groups and put forth a motion this past July to reconsider fluoridation and establish a working group of councillors and staff to hear from experts on both sides of the issue. His motion was originally defered until September, but when it was brought up in September the motion was again defered until after the October election. This was likely done to protect pro-fluoridation councillors from being held accountable by voters for their support of the practice.
In respone to the council defering the motion, Mississauga resident and Chairperson of Concerned Residents of Peel to End Water Fluoridation, Liesa Cianchino, filed a lawsuit against Peel Region and the Province of Ontario challenging the constitutionality and lawfulness of fluoridation since the harms overwhelmingly outweight the benefits of the practice. The case will be heard in Ontario Superior Court, and if successful could eventually lead to the end of fluoridation throughout Canada.
In the U.S., the city council in Forsythe, Missouri voted 4-0 to stop adding fluoride to the drinking water.. The decision came after state officials inspected the town’s water infrastructure and concluded that water employees couldn’t accurately control the amount of fluoride additive being injected into the public water supply. The state report said that “tests taken of the city water supply over the last since 2009 show that fluoride levels…have been inconsistent enough to cause a concern”.
Rather then make the necessary upgrades to the fluoride infrastructure, which are estimated at about $100,000, the council voted to stop the practice. Forsyth is the twelth Missouri town to stop water fluoridation in the past 16 years. Most city councils have cited the cost of fluoridation as the main reason they chose to discontinue the service. In addition to Forsyth, Farmington, Waynesville, Buffalo, and Pevely all mentioned damage to or problems with unreliable fluoridation equipment and infrastructure when they decided to cease fluoridation.
New Multimedia to Share:
- Dr. Mercola has created a new three-minute long video entitled “The Toxic Truth About Flouride and Its Health Danger.” The video gives a good general overview of the fluoridation, and is a good way to introduce your friends on social media to the truth about the neurotoxin.
- If you missed October’s International Fluoride Free Teleconference you can now download and listen to the audio. The teleconference covered how to discuss fluoridation with friends, co-workers, and family without creating conflict.
- FAN’s Director and co-author of the “Case Against Fluoride”, Paul Connett, PhD, has been busy traveling around North America educating residents and decision-makers about fluoridation, as well as occasionally debating the rare proponent willing to defend the practice. Here are several new pieces of multimedia from Paul’s travels that are definitely worth watching and listening to:
-Video of the entire Public Fluoride Debate held on October 11 in Boyne City, Michigan between Paul Connett and David Fierstien, a former wastewater operations foreman and manager.
-Paul’s comprehensive 50-minute radio interview on the Progressive Radio Network.
News You May Have Missed:
–Fluoride to Remain in Owen Sound’s Water (Ontario, Canada)
–The Toxic Import From China Hidden in This Everyday Beverage (Mercola.com)
–Utility to Review Adding Fluoride to Madison Water (Wisconsin)
–Oak Bluffs Defers Fluoride Decision to Voters (Massachusetts)
Visit the FAN News Archive for more fluoride news from around the world.
See all FAN bulletins