June 12, 2008:
DHSS LISTENS TO PUBLIC OPINION ON FLUORIDATION – D.H.S.S. Press Release
Following an extensive consultation process, the Department of Health and Social Security today recommended to the Council of Ministers not to proceed with fluoridating the Island’s water. The Council of Minister’s have accepted this recommendation.
The issue of fluoridating water has been proposed by various professional bodies and the Health Services Consultative Committee for many years. The Director of Public Health has a statutory duty to raise matters of concern brought to the attention of the Public Health Directorate, with the Department. In order to assess public opinion regarding the addition of fluoride to the Island’s water, the Department entered into a public debate. This consultation process has been very helpful to the Department, as it has established current public opinion and helped to highlight the poor level of dental health among our children.
Independent market researchers, GfK NOP, conducted a comprehensive survey on 12-15th May 2008. A random sample of 1000 Island residents were interviewed and all age groups 18 and over were represented. Results showed that a majority of respondents (54%) were opposed to fluoridation.
Hon W.E. Teare MHK, Minister for Health and Social Security said,
“The poll has highlighted some important issues for the Department to consider. Particularly in respect of the level of awareness amongst those polled of the rate of tooth decay and the general state of dental health in the Isle of Man compared to the UK.”
The Minister continued,
“In reporting the outcome of the telephone poll, the Department wants to assure the public that their views have been listened to. The poll results have shown that the majority of respondents are opposed to fluoridation of water in the Isle of Man. On that basis the Department accepts the results and will not continue with proposing fluoridation of the water, but will concentrate efforts in the coming years to further develop health promotion activity with regard to improving the dental health of everyone living in the Isle of Man.”
– END –
On Thursday June 12th 2008 the IOM DHSS [Isle of Man Department of Health and Social Security] announced via press release [see above] that they have officially abandoned all plans to fluoridate the Manx water supply, the decision was backed by the Council of Ministers.
The efforts to fluoridate the Manx water supply began back in September 2003 so this represents the end of a 5 year battle.
We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to all who have contributed to this massive success especially John Graham, Dr Paul Connett, Grant McPherson, Quintin Gill MHK, George Glasser, Doug Cross, Liz Vaughan, Ian Packington, Dr Peter Mansfield, David Gear, Doug & Manna Bairstow, Dawn Taylor, Dr Hans Moolenburgh, Walter Graham, Robert Pocock, Mary Hillary, Bruce Spittle, Dr A.K. Susheela, Jane Barham, Dr Adam Standring, Cathy and Wayne Justus, Janet Bridle, Leslie Hanson, Dr Mark Draper, Elizabeth McDonagh, PSM Commissioners, Ramsey Commissioners, IOM F.O.E., Glynne, Krista, Graham, Eva and to the many other concerned Manx citizens and organisations who helped by handing out leaflets, spreading the word on the issue, writing letters to the press and government, making calls to the radio, voting ‘no’ in the poll and by donating funds to the campaign. Also thanks to our friends and family for putting up with all that a long campaign brings. We would like to dedicate this victory for common sense and democracy to you all and in memory of Jane Jones of the NPWA who was so helpful and inspiring in the early days of our campaign.
Thank you all
Kevin Glynn & Greeba Skinner