The State Opposition’s spokesman for health says keeping fluoride out of the water supply is complete madness.
Earlier this week the Lismore City Council voted to scrap plans to add the chemical to its drinking water.
A Ballina Shire councillor plans to table a similar motion, and the Byron Shire opted out of the scheme several years ago.
Dr Andrew McDonald says the situation is a tragic joke.
“There is absolutely no doubt that if there is no fluoride in the water you will have increased rates of tooth decay,” he said.
“This is a decision that will have consequences for the people of the Lismore Council (area) for generations to come.
“This is complete madness and a small number of flat-earthers have hi-jacked the council.
“It is certainly time for the State Government to step in.
“This is what happens when you give control of fluoridation to local councils.
“It’s happened in Queensland and their dental health has got worse, we need to stop it happening in New South Wales.
“This should be a NSW Government responsibility.
“Every person in NSW who is able to get access to fluoride should have it.”
But the state’s Minister for Healthy Lifestyles says the government will not be stepping in to overturn the Lismore Council’s decision.
Kevin Humphries says adding fluoride to the water supply is a local government issue.
He says the state will respond if the council asks for help.
“What Lismore’s going through is not uncommon,” he said.
“It’s happened in other parts of the state and what it’s meant is that we’ve had to get in an educate people more fully about the benefits, and the potential downside… of not fluoridating your local water supply.
“Until they write to the Ministry of Health requesting fluoridation support, we cannot direct them.
“Once they’ve written, (it) tells us they’ve been through that community consultation process, then we will follow it up from there.
“But we will not be directing any local government area to fluoridate.”