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Fluoride: Drinking Water

Volume 478: debated on Thursday 26 June 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if he will ensure that strategic health authorities are required to consult members of the public before artificial fluoride is added to public drinking water; (213635)

(2) what plans he has for consulting the public prior to introducing fluoride into public water supply.

Section 3(1) of “The Water Fluoridation (Consultation) (England) Regulations 2005”, states that, in order to consult and ascertain opinion on proposals for fluoridation schemes, strategic health authorities (SHAs) should publish details of the proposals in one or more newspapers circulating within the area to which the proposals relate, and in such other media accessible within that area as the SHAs consider appropriate. For the purpose of bringing the proposals to the attention of people who would be affected and bodies with an interest. It is therefore for the SHAs to decide whether to undertake consultations.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether he makes funds available to national groups who disseminate information (a) in favour of and (b) against water fluoridation. (213637)

In 2008-09, the only grant the Department has made is one of £129,000 to the National Fluoride Information Centre, which provides evidence based scientific information on research studies carried out into the effect of adding fluoride to water and other mediums such as milk and table salt.