Fluoride Action Network

AWWA Warned Not to Remove or Destroy Evidence for Water Fluoridation Injury Legal Actions

Source: The Lillie Center, Inc. - media release | June 9th, 2008

Ellijay, GA: June 9, 2008 – The largest association of water professionals in the world has been notified not to destroy, remove, or tamper with documents or video recordings in its possession that may be used in legal actions on behalf of persons injured by drinking fluoridated water.

Robert Reeves, an attorney whose work helped force FDA to concede potential harm from mercury in dental fillings, sent a fluoride evidence preservation letter to the Denver-based 60,000-member American Water Works Association. The letter listed AWWA’s headquarters office, its regional section offices, and national and regional officers personally as “potentially responsible parties” that may be the subject of legal actions by kidney patients and others harmed by ingesting fluorides.

The development comes on the heels of last week’s dramatic news that the National Kidney Foundation has admitted that chronic kidney disease patients “should be notified of the potential risk” from ingesting fluorides and fluoridated water.

Kathleen Thiessen, PhD, one of the members of a National Research Council panel that issued a 500-page report on fluorides in 2006, says, “The NRC report indicated that kidney patients, diabetics, infants, and other groups are susceptible population groups. I am also personally concerned that black and other minority Americans are disproportionately harmed by fluoride, and I believe there is a potential risk of thyroid damage for overexposed Americans in general.”

In a January 2008 Scientific American article about fluorides, toxicologist John Doull, the chairman of the NRC panel, admitted, “The thyroid changes do worry me.”

Reeves’ letter demonstrates that attorneys across the country are becoming educated about fluoride, a substance acknowledged to rival arsenic and lead in toxicity. The letter also zeroes in on AWWA’s slogan that it is “The Authoritative Resource on Safe Water.” Reeves points out that AWWA doesn’t claim to be the authoritative resource on “pure or compliant” water, but on “safe” water, putting the organization and its directors in a position of “top tier accountability and responsibility” to disseminate even the bad news about fluoride.

“Looks like AWWA has painted a made-for-plaintiff-attorneys bulls-eye on themselves,” observes Daniel Stockin of The Lillie Center, Inc., a Georgia-based public health training firm that is working to end water fluoridation.

AWWA chose not to include scientists opposing fluoridation in a web-cast about fluoridation in 2006.

In AWWA’s written response to Reeves, the organization wrote, “AWWA looks to the medical and dental communities, the U.S. EPA, the Centers for Disease Control, and other…organizations for their information and research on medical and dental health.”

“Well, which is it?” Stockin questions. “Either AWWA is ‘The Authoritative Resource on Safe Water’ or it isn’t,” he states. “AWWA apparently ignored the rather obvious conflicts of interest of dental and health organizations that gave glowing reports on the safety of fluorides. If AWWA doesn’t quickly distance itself from the old-school idea that fluoride is safe even for sensitive populations, it will probably result in AWWA member water districts being forced to name the headquarters or regional staff or offices of AWWA as third party defendants when they’re sued by kidney patients and other groups.”

A growing number of cities have recently rejected water fluoridation, including the Canadian city of Quebec and Juneau, the capital of Alaska.

For more information, contact:

Daniel G. Stockin, MPH
The Lillie Center, Inc.
P.O. Box 839 Ellijay GA 30540
Ph: 706.669.0786 // Fax: 706.635.8170
Email: stockin2@yahoo.com

• Attorney Robert Reeves’ letter to AWWA available at: http://www.fluoridealert.org/reeves.pdf

• Video and news related to the National Kidney Foundation’s changed position on fluorides for kidney patients can be viewed at: http://www.fluoridealert.org/press/nfk2.html