City says current fluoride levels in line with provincial and local guidelines

Sudbury city councillor Fern Cormier has asked to receive all information the city has about putting fluoride in the municipal drinking water system.

Cormier says he and his colleagues receive a lot of calls about the issue, and he’s seen a lot of media reports over the past year about smaller communities turning away from fluoride.

According to the Sudbury & District Health Unit, fluoride is added to drinking water to protect against tooth decay.

But Cormier wants the city to wade through the information of fluoride’s effects and make it available.

“I’m particularly interested to know if our staff would have any research with respect to areas in any jurisdiction that has done this and then what effects there may have been going forward,” he said.

‘Easy to get lost’ in reams of information, says councillor

Cormier pointed out that there is a lot of contradictory information “floating out there.”

“If you Google this, you will find literally thousands of pages of information and you have the pro-fluoride camp and the anti-fluoride camp,” Cormier said.

“Frankly, if you’re not a person with a scientific background it’s easy to get lost in it,” he said. “A lot it sounds plausible and feasible on both sides of the argument.”

The council of Nairn and Hyman Township west of Sudbury voted to remove fluoride from its drinking water supply last year. The move condemned by the Sudbury and District Health Unit.

And tooth decay in children in Calgary worsened when the city stopped adding fluoride to drinking water in 2011, according to a 2016 study.

According to the city, Sudbury’s fluoride levels are in the range of 0.5 and 0.8 milligrams per litre — in line with Ontario’s drinking water standards set out by the provincial government, and within Sudbury and District Health Unit guidelines.

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