We ingest the chemical called fluoride every time we take a sip of city tap water, but is it really good for our teeth and overall health?
Local resident Barry Prince is again calling on Terrace to join the growing list of countries around the world who are phasing out fluoridation of public water, and this time he will have a petition which he hopes will convince city council that a referendum should be held on the matter.
Prince is scheduled to appear at the next city council meeting on Feb. 9 to press his case.
“If you look at America and what’s going on, you will see that there are thousands of communities that are standing against it right now,” said Prince, adding that Terrace is now only one of a handful of municipalities in B.C. that still puts fluoride in the municipal water supply.
Prince George voters, in a referendum in late 2014, approved the removal of the fluoride from their water.
Prince says information about why water fluoridation should be stopped is easy to find online and he wants Terrace residents to take a look themselves at the research showing it is not an effective way of stopping tooth decay and that it poses potential health risks for increased thyroid disease, cancer and other disruptions of important bodily processes.
“I urge the public to do their own research on this very controversial subject,” he said.
“I am going to show up with petitions in my hand,” he added of his presentation planned for council.
“We are getting a lot of signatures.”
With a long list of people signed up, he hopes to sway council to bring the question formally to the public through a ballot.
The last time Prince spoke to council, it was determined that because the initial decision to put fluoride in the water was made through a referendum, that a reversal of the program would also require such civic engagement.
Prince says the petition is available at Dynamic Health Service and The Dollar Store by Shoppers Drug Mart, Dr. Linsey’s office and Chill & Grill.
He said information can be found online by searching “professional perspective on fluoride” and “the history of fluoride”.
Fort St. John, Prince Rupert and Cranbrook are the only two other B.C. communities to have fluoride in their water supply. The bid to take fluoride out of Prince George’s water was opposed by a coalition of dentists and others, but was passed by referendum in 2014.
Toronto also voted to keep its water fluoridation program.
This will be the third approach Prince has made to city council.