City chews on it

Bid to fast-track fluoride for Yanchep

CHILDREN in Yanchep needed twice as many dental fillings as the State average, according to WA’s fluoridation advisory committee.

“From November 2009 to November 2010 children enrolled in the School Dental Service in Yanchep and surrounding areas required nearly twice as many fillings compared to the WA average,” Fluoridation of Public Water Supplies Advisory Committee chairman Richard Lugg said.

Responding to questions from the Times, Dr Lugg said according to the Water Corporation, it would cost between $400,000 and $500,000 to set up fluoridation facilities at Yanchep.

It would also cost between $25,000 and $50,000 a year to operate.

“These amounts would have minimal impact on the metropolitan water rates and charges made by the Corporation,” he said.

Wanneroo councillors have been advised to support the fluoridation of Yanchep’s water supply at tonight’s council meeting.

The proposal was included on the meeting agenda after the City received a letter seeking its comment in February.

The staff recommendation advises councillors to recognise evidence that suggests fluoridation is beneficial for reducing dental cavities and to request the chief executive write to the advisory committee supporting the proposal.

At the Two Rocks Yanchep Residents Association meeting on March 28, councillor Norman Hewer said the water supply would be fluoridated anyway when it was linked to the main Perth supply, according to the report.

“At some stage in the future when Yanchep’s water supply is connected to the Integrated Water Supply Scheme, fluoridation will automatically occur,” the report said.

At a public consultation in March, almost 30 people indicated they did not support fluoridation because of potential side effects.


Update, April 12: Council votes for flouridation

WANNEROO councillors have voted to recognise the health benefits of a proposal to fluoridate Yanchep’s water supply.

During discussion of a recommendation to write to the Fluoridation of Public Water Supplies Advisory Committee, councillor Laura Gray said council should support the proposal and request public consultation be considered in the committee’s decision.

Cr Alan Blencowe alone voted against the recommendation, saying it was not appropriate to make a unanimous decision.

Perth Fluoride Free founder James Fairbairn said it was good council took into account the wishes of residents who attended the original consultation and oppose fluoridation.

“It is essential residents of Yanchep and Two Rocks make their voices heard before the September 14 deadline.”


MORE: Water fluoridation anger