Calgary Regional Health Authority Position Statement on Fluoridation
Fluoridation's alleged safety and benefit according to local proponents

The opinion below was attached to the O&E Agenda of 09/10/97
See the scientific response at calgaryl.htm

CRHA
Calgary Regional Health Authority

POSITION STATEMENT ON FLUORIDATION
Water fluoridation is an extremely important public health measure. It safely and effectively reduces the incidence of tooth decay at low cost. Water fluoridation benefits adults as well as children. The benefits last a lifetime when consumption of water continues.

Water fluoridation is one of the fairest ways for everyone in a community to benefit regardless of income, education, or financial ability to seek dental care. People benefiting the most from water fluoridation are those most susceptible to tooth decay. Typically these are the poorest and most disadvantaged members of our community.

The world-wide evidence supporting water fluoridation is well-founded and continues to grow. No other public measure has received more intensive scientific research into its safety. Over fifty years of animal and human scientific studies have shown water fluoridation to be safe and effective. Scientists still pursue ongoing, intensive research on fluorides and fluoridation.

The Canadian Dental Association, the American Dental Association, the World Health Organization the U.S. Public Health Service and its Centers For Disease Control, and the Fédération Dentaire Internationale, continue to responsibly monitor fluoride's effects. Periodic allegations of "new evidence" purporting to show the harmful effects of fluoridation do not withstand the test of objective, scientific scrutiny. In other communities where fluoridation was discontinued, the rate of tooth decay began to climb.

In Calgary, the initial public concern regarding the safety of water fluoridation, which was largely fueled [sic] by the antifluoridationists, has subsided. Telephone inquiries concerning fluoride have decreased markedly since the plebiscite, and now average about 60 calls per year. Most calls are from students doing projects, citizens traveling [sic] and wanting fluoride supplements, and CRHA residents inquiring about fluoride in well water. Very few are from citizens inquiring about the health effects.

The CRHA has the responsibility to protect and promote the health of the more than 800,000 individuals in the region and to work for the prevention of disease and injury. The CRHA Board unanimously supported controlled water fluoridation on February 27, 1995. In light of a lack of a significant change in public health recommendations about water fluoridation, another plebiscite would be a considerable expense to the taxpayer, both for the plebiscite itself and for the public education campaign which would be necessary.

Contacts:
Dr. Brent Friesen, M.D., F.R.C.P.C.
Medical Officer of Health/Chief Regional Officer, Population Health
Telephone: (403) 228-7532

Dr. John Willey, B.A., D.D.S., D.D.P.H., F.RC.C.D.
Director, Oral health Program
Telephone: (403) 228-7403
April 22, 1997


The name may be different, but the players and tactics today are the same as they were in 1989. Further information on Calgary Regional Health Authority's (CRHA) role in the 1991 fluoridation plebiscite can be found at: crha.htm, behavior.htm, calgbias.htm

What follows is a perfect example of indoctrination as described in the Townsend Letter for Doctors. It is from a page in a dental hygiene unit developed by Calgary Health Services (CRHA's predecessor). It was taught to Calgary teenagers in 1988. The students in this class requested the city to hold a fluoridation plebiscite in 1989.

Go to the letters from scientists to see whether this even comes close to reality!


Q. What are the main reasons why people oppose fluoridation?

A. Some devout antifluoridationists seem to see themselves as saviours of their fellow men through opposition to fluoridation. Others (including a few trained health professionals) seem motivated by distrust of government alientation [Sic] from the scientific establishment. Some opponents appear to perceive certain health measures as threats to their sense of physical or psychic wholeness (sometimes referred to as their "life space"). Some individuals may also defend themselves against "forcible entry" of any perceived "foreign body", whether it [Sic] fluoridation, vaccination, a mental health proposal or interracial contact. Most people opposed to fluoridation, however are not devout opponents. They have simply become confused by the shrill claims of its opponents. Senior citizens, who may worry more about their health, may be particularly vulnerable to antifluoridation scare tactics.

Q. Who are fluoridation's most active opponents?

A. Since it began, fluoridation has encountered opposition from scattered groups and individuals, Many have been associated with the with the "health food: megavitamin industry -- which aligns fluoridation with its general Propaganda that our food supply is "poisoned". Rodale Press, publisher of Prevention magazine, opposed fluoridation vigorously until the death of its founder, J. I. Rodale, in 1971. Prevention's current executive editor realizes that fluoridation prevents cavities, but the magazine has not so informed its readers.

The most effective antifluoridation group is the National Health Federation (NHF), established to promote "unproved remedies, eccentric theories & quackery." In 1974, NHF announced that opposing fluoridation would be its number two priority and hired a biochemist named John Yiamouyiannis to do the job. For more than five years, Yiamouyiannis served effectively as a consultant to most local and state groups which fought against fluoridation. In March 1980, after a falling out with other NHF leaders, he left the organization to form the National Clean Water Foundation.

Q. What tactics do antifluoridationists use?

A. The basic technique is to create doubts in the minds of citizens by blaming fluoridation for a large number of diseases and other problems. Even though these claims are baseless, or even boldfaced lies -- if they are repeated often enough, many people will feel there may be some truth to them and it is not worth the risk.


See letters from scientists!

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