No choice with fluoride: Mayor

EMAILS arrived from around the globe after Saturday’s Daily News report on the fluoridation of water in Stanthorpe and Warwick.

Southern Downs Regional Council contractors yesterday finalised installation of new fluoride treatment pumps the two major towns’ water treatment plants and will start introducing fluoride from today.

The steps are required under State Government’s Water Fluoridation Act 2008 to assist with dental health.

Mayor Ron Bellingham yesterday said the council had no choice in taking these steps.

“This is a State Government initiative, under the legislation we’re required to comply,” he said.

However, letter writers to the Daily News were disgusted with the move.

One Warwick reader wrote in to ask how can compulsory medication, which affects people, and animals, of all ages and physical conditions be a good thing?

“And what is the effect of continually adding a known toxin to the environment?” the reader asked.

Others agreed and said those who wanted fluoride could easily make a conscientious decision to take it.

“When fluoride treatment of public water supplies is mandated, advocates are saying that individuals have no rights, that only they know what is best for all of us and the rest of us should not be allowed to make conscientious decisions regarding ourselves and our children,” one reader wrote.

Douglas Yates, all the way from Alaska, felt the need to provide his opinion.

However, he blamed the media for failing to communicate the facts about fluoridation.

“You should hang your heads in shame,” he said.

“Meanwhile, a city task force in Fairbanks, Alaska recommended discontinuing fluoridation in a report published March 15 of this year.

“I attended each of the Fairbanks task force meetings over the course of a year.

“Five of the six members concluded last month that fluoridation does more harm than good.”

At home, contractors, Prominent Fluid Control, will start testing the new pumps, fine-tuned to calibrate liquids by the milligram, tomorrow with very low amounts of fluoride.

A council spokeswoman said, over the next few days, they would gradually increase the level of fluoride in the water treatment plants in line with Australian drinking water guidelines (0.8mg/litre).

It will then take between three days and one week for treated water to reaching households.

Water will be continually tested for levels.

Stanthorpe will see it a little quicker as it is a smaller water reticulation system. Warwick will take a little longer but within a week or so residents will have fluoride in their water.

Residents in the smaller towns on the Downs will avoid the fluoridation process as it is only to be implemented in towns with a population of more than 1000, meaning Allora and Killarney will not be affected.

The process was supposed to be put in place by the end of the year, but due to the floods was put on hold until now.

For information on fluoridation of the water systems visit

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