Rethink Fluoride campaign launched to counter Health (Fluoridation of Drinking Water) Amendment Bill
MEDIA RELEASE: Posted 30 July 2018
A nationwide campaign has been launched to oppose the Health (Fluoridation of Drinking Water) Amendment Bill currently before Parliament. The campaign, Rethink Fluoride, brings together New Zealanders who oppose the mass fluoridation of our drinking water, many of whom made submissions to the Health Select Committee considering the Bill. The vast majority of public submissions opposed the Bill.
Retired dentists Dr Lawrie Brett and Dr John Jukes will head the campaign. They say, “International peer-reviewed research has shown fluoridation to be unsafe and ineffective, which is why it is not endorsed by the majority of international health authorities.”
The Fluoridation of Drinking Water Bill, introduced by the previous Government and currently before Parliament, seeks to shift decision making from democratic territorial local authorities (local Councils) to District Health Boards, under the direction or at least heavy influence of the Ministry of Health, with no public input into the decision. Former Health Minister Annette King acknowledged this is effectively mandatory fluoridation by proxy in her speech at the Bill’s first reading.
The coalition behind Rethink Fluoride notes that, if this Bill is passed, New Zealand will become one of only three countries in the world with mandatory fluoridation and without addressing the larger issues arising from fluoridation.
Fluoride Free NZ, an organisation established to end water fluoridation in New Zealand, has lent its support to the campaign and provided seed funding.
Rethink Fluoride’s objective is to encourage Parliament not to proceed with the Bill and in fact use this opportunity to take a fresh look at the fluoridation issue. This is especially important today with the growing body of evidence pointing to harm from fluoride even at levels we have previously believed to be safe.
The campaign will utilise social media, public relations and networking to raise awareness about fluoridation and to promote debate about fluoridation.
“New Zealand is one of a tiny minority of countries that fluoridate drinking water, as a result of ties with the USA. Less than five percent of the world’s population is fluoridated, with more and more cities stopping every year. Unfortunately, New Zealand, as this legislation demonstrates, is apparently intent on travelling in the opposite direction.
“We believe that, were New Zealanders better aware of the facts about fluoridation, our parliamentarians would be less inclined to disregard the body of evidence against the fluoridation of our drinking water.”
Rethink Fluoride says that in March 2014 fluoride was classified as a neurotoxin in world-renowned medical journal, The Lancet.
There are now 59 human studies that have looked at fluoride exposure and effects on brain function. 52 of these show fluoride’s damaging effect: lowered IQ, behavioural deficits, nervous disorders, and memory disruption. The most recent, a landmark US Government funded, multi-million-dollar study was published in Environmental Health Perspectives in 2017. It found that children exposed to fluoride in utero, to mothers experiencing the same level of fluoride exposure as pregnant NZ women, have reduced IQ.
Now that the Supreme Court has ruled that fluoridation is compulsory medical treatment, and this breach of the Bill of Rights Act can only be justified if there are real benefits and no significant risks, it is essential that this balancing be re-evaluated in light of current scientific evidence.
“Just as we had to rethink lead in petrol, which is also estimated to have lowered IQ by 5 points, we need to rethink water fluoridation. In fact, we have more scientific evidence against fluoride than we had against both DDT and lead in petrol when they were banned.”
Rethink Fluoride believes that most people who investigate the issue of fluoridation with an open mind will conclude that, at the least, our parliamentarians should adopt the precautionary principle and suspend the fluoridation of our drinking water, and reject the current legislation.
To learn more about fluoridation, explore this website or visit the Rethink Fluoride Facebook page.
For further information, please contact:
Dr Lawrie Brett M:027 435 0412
Spokesperson E: firstname.lastname@example.org
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