In yesterday’s bulletin I explained how the CDC, ADA, and a chemical manufacturer will be using and promoting new technology starting in January to force fluoridation chemicals on an additional 19 million Americans, and likely millions more in Canada and Australia over the coming months and years. As the ADA said, this is “game-changing” technology, and it means that the Fluoride Action Network needs to respond adequately to this threat, or the “game” will be lost and many more children and adults will be harmed by this practice for many years to come.
Throughout most of North America—and the world—the decision to add fluoridation chemicals to the public drinking water is made at the local level. While federal agencies may promote the practice, the Safe Drinking Water Act in the U.S. prohibits them from mandating it. City councilors or municipal water directors usually make the decision, but this varies across the country, and can include local decisions by water boards, health boards, private water companies, water authorities, and ballot initiatives or citizen referendums.
Since 2010, we’re aware of nearly 300 communities that have ended or rejected fluoridation chemicals; many using FAN’s educational materials, network, and guidance. While this is already far more than have started the practice during the same time period, we believe the number of communities that have actually ended fluoridation due to cost, corrosion, worker safety, and the known health hazards posed to the public is significantly higher than 300. Occasionally, a Freedom of Information Act request to state drinking water agencies requesting lists of communities that have ended fluoridation will confirm this suspicion, as we discover numerous smaller towns that rejected fluoridation without media coverage or input from outsiders.
If a local rejection of fluoridation isn’t reported in the media, and a local decision maker, water operator, or organizer hasn’t reached out to FAN, it’s less likely that we would know about it. As you can imagine, tracking tens of thousands of local government proceedings each week is logistically impossible, or at least it WAS impossible until recently. In the past, this often worked in our favor, as communities worked quietly to remove the chemical without fanfare to avoid irrational personal attacks against decision-makers and unscientific scrutiny from the dental lobby. However, with the opponents of safe drinking water now targeting small and rural communities, an inability to track their actions has become a significant problem rather than an advantage.
This week, FAN subscribed to a new service called Curate that utilizes artificial intelligence and machine-learning technology to scan and filter through hundreds-of-thousands of municipal documents, meeting minutes, and agendas of local councils, agencies, boards, and committees to find any mention of fluoride, fluoridation, additives, water infrastructure, etc. We will be using this technology to provide an early warning system for our campaigners and professionals on fluoridation-related activity in conjunction with the various tracking strategies we’ve utilized up until now. We will also be using this technology to dig deeper into problems associated with fluoridation, since we’re already discovering documents detailing spills, corrosion, overfeeds, and exorbitant costs associated with the practice, along with examples of how our opponents indoctrinate and reward water employees.
While the media and other environmental and safe water nonprofits continue to avoid the issue of fluoridation and are doing nothing to respond to this huge public health threat, we are taking immediate and meaningful action to combat our well-financed opponents. We searched for a solution, and found a new technology that should give us the best chance at stopping the dental lobby and chemical industry’s New Wave Tablet and Feeder system. We hope this explanation helps our supporters see just one example–out of many–of how we’re using our budget to defend the public’s drinking water.
Fluoride Action Network
DECEMBER FUNDRAISING UPDATE
At a very difficult economic time for many people, we are especially grateful to those who contributed to our funds for next year’s campaign. We simply cannot let unscrupulous people put profit and false pride above our children’s future. Every donation – large or small – is crucial in this effort. As Lord Reay said in the House of Lords, “You can repair a damaged tooth but not a damaged brain.”
Our current totals stand at $28,496 from 166 supporters
How to Make a Tax-Deductible Donation:
- Online, using our secure server.
- Or by Check, payable to the Fluoride Action Network. Mail your check to:
Fluoride Action Network
105 Kingston Road
Exeter, NH 03833