What’s this, then?
A message to NPWA members. Welcome to this first edition of the UKFFFA – newsletter, designed specifically for members of the NPWA, who have been left somewhat bereft since the last Watershed appeared. This is a pilot edition. We are currently planning to send a similar edition at least three to four times a year, Each edition will be designed as an attachment that you can if you wish print on A4 sized sheets – a maximum of eight sides.
This format allows the production of a paper edition for those who do not have access to a computer. However, we would strongly recommend you accept the e-mailed version. As well as being extremely costly in postage, printing and time and wasteful of resources, the paper format always limits the content. The on-line edition is easier to include some colour, to add any extra news quickly, and to provide links to original material and resources such as video and audio recordings. You will also be able to see the last three years of local and international news, and reports and links to research and material that has been available during that time.
Your feedback on how the newsletter and the associated web site should be developed is welcome.
And who are you?
The UK Freedom from Fluoride Alliance was formed in 2016 and is in the process of creating a national service aimed at supporting activists and active groups in the UK. .
UKFFA founding organisations were the West Midlands against Fluoridation (WMAF), itself expanding from a regional to a national role and the Safe Water Information Service (SWIS), originated in 1985 by former NPWA members, and reactivated in 2013
Neither UKFFFA nor SWIS have large data bases of paid subscribers and we are not competing with NPWA for that role. Instead, by sharing costs and time those who are committed to ending fluoridation will be better informed and part of a strengthened national anti-fluoridation movement.
The UKFFFA coordinators and other contributors receive no payment and any funds received go to expenses of fighting the threats of fluoridation wherever they appear.
The compiler of the SWIS website that is now incorporated into UKFFFA continues to collect news on a daily basis, edit its presentation and to add editorial and comments from activists at least monthly. This newsletter is based on a selection of website postings from the last few weeks and has been expanded to include an update of the status of all current UK fluoridation proposals.
Why include American news?
The U.S. is the source of the original, and continuing, pressure for artificial (often euphemistically known as ‘community’) water fluoridation. Any success in repelling its entrenched position there would have a big impact on all of us. It also gives an idea of what it is like to be fighting in ten or more places at once. We also publish news from the US based Fluoride Action Network and the International Fluoride Free Teleconference (IFFT) as probably the largest sources of fluoride information anywhere.
Although many NPWA members will be well aware of the current battles and how the legal situation has changed since 2013, there may be others who would welcome a concise explanation to bring them up-to-date, and to include something of the most important recent research on the dangers of fluoride on the human body. In subsequent editions in 2017 we will re-present extracts from research and articles on
Legislation and Consultation after the ending of Strategic Health Authorities
Fluoridation and ADHD
Fluoride and thyroid malfunction
Fluoride as a neurotoxin
Is this enough for you?
If not, go to our web site ukfffa.org.uk
Please reply – however briefly - to confirm you have received the News and would like to be kept in the loop. For various reasons, the address list used may not reflect recent changes, so please accept our apologies if the person to whom this is addressed has moved, or is no longer with us – just reply and we will put it right. Undelivered or refused postings will be automatically deleted from future mail or e-mail lists
The UKFFFA is here to help. Please keep supporting the NPWA and we will keep supporting you.
So what can I do?
You don’t have to go on marches and hold placards to help – just keep an eye on local papers and other media to be aware of any plans afoot in your area. If you have had any meeting or correspondence with authorities please tell us. Meanwhile, a brief mention in a local paper from an MP or a member of the local council or ‘Health and Well Being Board’ may alert you that someone is willing to promote a scheme. The sooner we know, the better the chances of countering the propaganda. Don’t wait for a ‘public consultation’. ‘If you suspect it – report it! ‘
For the most part, we are holding the fluoridationists at bay in the UK – but there is always a risk of frustrated fanatics pushing for mandatory schemes. Proposals to enforce fluoridation at a state or national level appear frequently in the US states, and one is in its final stage period of consultation in New Zealand. Despite massive public opposition and votes throughout the country, fluoridation still has not been beaten in Ireland. They never give up – and nor will we, until it is illegal to force anyone to consume a toxic substance, for supposed medical purposes, in uncontrollable quantities, whether needed or not, whether wanted or not, for ever. The arrogance of those who defend the practice is staggering. Whatever our age, we owe it to the generations after us to do what we can to stop it.
Current threats of fluoridation in the UK
Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire:
During November 2016, Hull City Council’s Executive Cabinet was asked to approve expenditure on an engineering feasibility study.
Paddy Holdsworth, John Pickles and other campaigners from Hull, supported by Joy Warren, attended both the Health and Well Being Board and a full Council meeting. There was little opportunity to intervene or question the process, and the Council’s overall Labour majority had already decided to agree to the feasibility study. We learned this week that Hull's Public Health budget is being used to commission a full engineering feasibility study. Thus Hull City Council has embarked on the next step of the programme to push fluoridation on Hull and the East Riding.
Our hope is that the water company may, for whatever reason, delay their reply until the next election when there could be a change in the make-up of the Council.
Joy Warren has linked up with the Lib Dems and has discussed the issue with Mike Ross (Lib Dem Leader) following the Full Council Meeting in 2016 when the Labour Group voted to pursue WF.
Paddy Holdsworth, who lives in the East Riding, says that “The East Riding potentially has 87K people who may become fluoridated whilst Hull potentially has 345K. This means that the East Riding is responsible for 25% of the potential scheme with Hull responsible for 75%
Costs are projected to be far higher than in previous years. £2million capital cost and 330K annual revenue costs. That makes the East Riding responsible for finding £500K capital costs and £82.5K annual revenue costs. Hull would have to fork out £1.5m capital costs and £247.5K annual revenue costs. However, PHE has now undertaken to pay the capital costs.
Regarding the ongoing revenue costs, continuing reductions to public-sector funding would probably mean that other Council activities would need to cease or reduce in order to release the necessary funding. This means that revenue costs are not going to be paid from a ring-fenced health budget. Instead, Council Tax is going to be used fluoridate Hull. This is the weakness of the proposal and will bring Hullites out in their droves (I hope).”
Since most of the water goes down the drain without being drunk, most of the money spent on the acid and maintenance would be wasted. It can also be argued that capital costs are wasted: why spend all that money on fluoridation equipment when so little of the fluoride is swallowed?
For those NPWA members who live in Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire, there is a Water Fluoridation Conversation meeting at the University of Hull at 1pm on 2nd April. Pre-booking is essential in order to secure a seat. Go to http://scifest.hull.ac.uk/whats-on/debates/water-fluoridation-conversation/ to book a free seat. Hull For Pure Water will be on hand to give you a list of questions which can be asked of the all-pro-fluoridation panel.
A particularly tenacious Dental Public Health Consultant attached to Public Health England (Anita Dobson), considers that fluoridation is the answer to a maiden’s prayer.
However, on 4th October 2016, the Health and Well Being Board state the following: “In relation to water fluoridation, the meeting noted the complicated process in achieving this, not least because it was difficult to isolate Barnsley’s water supply from surrounding areas. It was therefore important that this not be progressed unless the position of neighbouring local authorities was clear.” In fact both Wakefield and Rotherham to the north and south of Barnsley have decided against fluoridation and since they are the nearest local authorities to Barnsley it seems unlikely that further efforts will be made by Anita Dobson to progress fluoridation until after Wakefield examines the issue again in 2018. In the meantime, we are collating all research which will convince Wakefield that the case in favour of fluoridation has not been proven.
During November, MP Graham Allen, rather precipitously issued a Press Release in which he urges Nottingham City Council to consider water fluoridation ‘As part of efforts to improve the ‘Victorian’ conditions of children’s teeth.’
This seems like the beginning of a campaign here. The article has the local MP mentioning Hull and bemoaning the North Nottingham five-year-olds who need surgery on their mouth (which does, of course, have nothing whatsoever to do with fluoride or the lack of it). ). As soon as it became apparent that the MP wanted Nottingham City Council to consider water fluoridation, Joy Warren shot off an email to him and to the Chair of the Health and Well-Being Board. Nothing further has been heard of the MP’s wish to get Nottingham fluoridated. Also, in the last few days we have learned that Graham Allen is in communication with The Teeth Team which is tackling dental decay amongst disadvantaged children in the City and it may be that fluoridation is somewhere over the horizon at this time. None-the-less, it’s disquieting to have had this pro-fluoridation MP nibbling away in Nottingham whilst our focus ought to be on Hull and the East Riding.
In 2016, The Overview and Scrutiny Committee decided to postpone consideration of WF until 2018 when the Committee will be pleased to review any research on WF which has been published since 2014. We realise that PHE’s 2nd Health Monitoring Report will be due in 2018 and this will be reviewed by the Committee as well. We have little faith in the veracity of the 2014 Health Monitoring Report since too many relevant aspects of WF were swept under the carpet. Indeed only those issues which PHE cherry-picked were included.
Councillors from Cumbria County Council will delay making a decision on water fluoridation until the findings of a study have been revealed.
Members of the council’s cabinet claim that they need more information about the impact of fluoridation on a local scale before they make a decision on the future of fluoridation in the area.
In September, a petition, which urged councillors to debate the possibility of removing fluoride from community water supplies, was presented to Allerdale Local Committee, and the council referred to the matter to the cabinet.
Before the cabinet made a decision, members were encouraged by the director of public health to wait for the findings of a study known as Catfish to be released. The Catfish study (Cumbrian Assessment of Teeth, a Fluoride Intervention Study for Health) aims to provide information about the impact of a recent break in fluoridation on children’s dental health
This begs the question: if the science was settled about fluoridation, then there wouldn’t be the need to undertake this type of study where the health and intelligence of children in West Cumbria is being sacrificed.
The good news was reported in Bedford Today on September 7th
Campaign group Fluoride Free Bedford have battled against fluoridation since 2002, creating their own documentary ‘Toxic tap water’ and petitioning Bedford Borough Council.
Last week Mayor of Bedford Dave Hodgson said at an executive council meeting: “Fluoride will not go [back] into the water' ...His comments follow a unanimous vote by councillors on July 20 to end water fluoridation in the borough.
And now,the latest news...
Jeremy Hunt has refused permission for Bedford Borough Council to break its contract with Industrial Chemicals Group Limited (the new supplier of the fluoridating acid) so Bedford is now forced to go out to Public Consultation. Fluoride Free Bedford (FFB) will be active throughout the period leading up to the consultation and during the three months of the consultation. Volunteers will be most welcome to help FFB. Contact Cynthia Bagchi on her email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Birmingham: The flagship of water fluoridation has been dealt a resounding shot across the bows. Apparently, “Thousands of Brummie kids are having lots of teeth extracted in hospital. The numbers have increased SEVENFOLD since 2010/11, when there were 208 hospital admissions for tooth extraction.” So much for reducing dental health inequalities across social groups. Pro-fluoridationists in Birmingham are dwelling in a surrealistic bubble of their own making. Yes – the statistics need to be analysed since we can’t depend on newspaper reporters interpreting the data correctly but, this is what we’ve been saying all along – that fluoride when swallowed does not reduce dental decay. In fact the British Fluoridation Society has up until recently declared systemic fluoride as being a minor mechanism.
More about this will be posted on the UKFFA site when we’ll tell you about the outcome of the ‘Conversation’ in Hull University on 2nd April where a Director of the BFS will be trying (in vain, we hope) to convince the audience that fluoride is “safe and effective”. Yuk!
Buda, Texas Feb 7
Bearing signs and cornflower blue T-shirts reading “Whiskey is for drinking, water is for fighting for,” members of the anti-fluoride group Buda Citizens for Safe Water came ready for a fight Tuesday evening.
But minutes before the public hearing began; the City Council surprised the crowd and passed a motion allowing voters to decide in November whether to fluoridate the city’s water supply.
Concord, New Hampshire Feb 15
Two attempts to curtail fluoridation of public water supplies - ...One bill, HB230, would have made it harder to file petitions seeking to add fluoride to water supplies, The other, HB585, would have changed state law to ban fluoridation outright; currently, - ... were killed by the House Municipal and County Government committee
Durango, Colorado Feb 8
The Durango City Council ... voted against a citizen-driven petition to prohibit the practice of adding fluoride to the city’s water supply, a process called fluoridation. Procedurally, it forces them to put it on the April ballot for a public vote.
Greenfield, MA Feb 9
After hearing overwhelming opposition from residents, the town’s Board of Health has decided not to support community water fluoridation. Board of Health Chairman Dr. William Doyle said. ““There were numerous citizens who voiced their concerns at both of our meetings,” “I think most of us were impressed with the public comments, really,” he said. “The people who were against it really came out in force and, quite frankly, some of their comments resonated with me and the board.”
Jonesborough Tennessee Feb 14
The Jonesborough Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted to remove fluoride from the town’s water supply after a 3-1 vote at its monthly meeting Monday...
Mayor Kelly Wolfe invited two community members to present each side of the issue one more time.... Jay Jarman argued ... that ingesting fluoride does not have any benefits and that fluoride can be administered through toothpaste, mouthwash, tablets and dentist visits.“I was unable to find any peer-reviewed scientific studies that show any benefit to ingesting fluoridated water,” Jarman said. “In fact, the opposite is true”. ...
Little Rock, Arkansas Feb 8
(KTHV) - A bill introduced to the Arkansas Senate on Wednesday is looking to amend laws concerning water districts and the fluoridation of water.
An election would be called if there's a majority vote of the board of directors of the district or a petition is signed by at least 35 percent of the voters in the district.
...The bill has yet to be read or sent to a committee for review.
Orange Water, NC Feb 10
CHAPEL HILL -- Human error and equipment malfunctions have been blamed for the over-fluoridation of water at the Jones Ferry Road Water Treatment Plant that prompted a shutdown and later contributed to one of the largest water main breaks in OWASA history.
..The shutdown began with an unintentional keystroke by a water treatment plant operator... an operator unintentionally sent a command to the fluoride feed pump ... “this resulted in a fluoride overfeed at approximately 10 times the expected feed rate.”
Parsons City, Kansas Feb 18
Parsons city commissioners will take up the usually contentious issue of fluoridation of the public water supply during their Monday evening meeting. The meeting’s agenda includes ... an application for a grant ... to re-introduce fluoride to the water supply after an absence of about four years.
The city discontinued ... adding fluoride at the water treatment plant in 2013 because of corrosion in piping at the point where fluoride and caustic soda were added. ... . .... ...When commissioners discussed fluoridation in 2013, a group of residents formed Parsons for Pure Water to oppose it.
The Parsons Sun included a poll for their readers: Should Parsons City reintroduce fluoride? We obliged with a vote, which then returned these results: Yes 50% No 50%
Truckee Meadows, Nevada Feb 15
A bill introduced by two state lawmakers that would require the Nevada Board of Health adopt regulations mandating the fluoridation of water in counties with more than 100,000 residents concerns local officials.
…Voters in 2002 rejected WC-1, which would fluoridate the water system. “I object to a state mandate,” Councilwoman Jenny Brekhus said. “Water shouldn’t be used as a medical delivery system.” Ultimately, the board declined to support the bill as written because of cost and the decision of voters 15 years ago
Moncton, New Brunswick Feb 7
After Calgary banned fluoride three years ago, a report using spurious data attacked the decision as having caused more decay in the children’s teeth. This is another attempt to reverse a city’s decision to end fluoridation.
Moncton Mayor Dawn Arnold has told a group of citizens council will take more than a month to decide if fluoride will go back into the city's drinking water.
About 25 people rose to stand behind fluoridation opponent Jennifer Jones. "Public water does not belong to dentists," she said. "Public water is not the way to administer a drug, especially a drug as controversial as fluoride.".... It will cost about $20,000 to upgrade the system if fluoride is returned to the water supply.
Peel, Ontario Feb 15
Peel is currently the target for legal action by an anti-fluoride group and this seems to show the council squirming to find a way out.
Peel is asking the provincial government to conduct toxicity tests on the additive used to fluoridate the region’s drinking water. Regional council wants the Ontario government to provide clear evidence the additive is safe for human consumption.
...Peel councillors decided to drop the local controversy in the Ontario government’s lap. For a year now, councillors on Peel Region’s Community Water Fluoridation Committee have been re-examining the benefits and potential health risks associated with adding fluoride to the municipal drinking water system. .... However, it appears council members are no closer to forming that position than they were a year ago.
Western Australia Feb 16
An alliance between micro-parties and independents could result in the election of a Fluoride Free WA representative in the Upper House from fewer than 1000 votes, electoral analysts believe.
The deal, which The West Australian understands was finalised by preference broker Glenn Druery at the weekend, includes more than half the groups contesting the East Metropolitan Region putting Fluoride Free WA second on their group voting tickets.
...The Fluoride Free party, registered last month, aims to stop water fluoridation in WA. Before achieving that, the party wants to implement policies including warnings on water bills and council and Health Department websites about using fluoridation for infants’ formula, and free fluoride-free water in every childcare centre, hospital, senior nursing home and a source in every council.
Fluoride Free Western Australia Upper House candidate John Watt (pictured) said the deal had been “fantastic”.
Two online articles in ‘stuff.nz’ referred to the proposed Health (Fluoridation of Drinking Water) Amendment Bill that will take the decision to fluoridate away from councils and give it to district health boards (DHBs). The bill passed its first reading and was open for public comment until February 2. One stated that the draft legislation includes a fine of $200,000, and a further $10,000 a day, where councils refused to act on a board direction to fluoridate water supplies. Another reported that the Canterbury District Health Board (CDHB) has failed to make a submission on a controversial fluoridation bill because disagreements meant it ran out of time. The latter helpfully provided another poll should Christchurch water be fluoridated? This time, the SWIS vote was supported by in a majority: Yes 37 %, No 63 %
U.K. FREEDOM FROM FLUORIDE ALLIANCE
Co-ordinators: Joy Warren and Ivor Hueting.