Friday, December 6, 2013

By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Friday, December 6, 2013

Fluoride question too technical for city voters?

After a three-hour debate and several public delegations, Stoney Creek Councillor Brad Clark withdrew his motion Wednesday to ask voters whether the city should continue adding fluoride to municipal water.

Some delegates argued the always-controversial issue is too technical to add as a yes-or-no question to the 2014 ballot.

But Clark said it was “offensive” and “elitist” to suggest the issue was too complex for residents to understand.

He argues residents always deserve the right to weigh in on what kind of medicine “goes in their children’s mouths.”

Councillor Chad Collins said he didn’t want to make the next election all about fluoride.

“We have so many more important issues to deal with,” he said.

Most councillors were unimpressed with the referendum idea, but some expressed interest in further study of the issue.

Councillors approved a motion asking medical officer of health Dr. Elizabeth Richardson to report back on the feasibility and cost of a community task force on fluoridation.

Richardson had earlier told councillors she feels the practice is safe and beneficial. (Source: Hamilton Spectator)