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Hastings has spoken - Yes to fluoride

Hastings has spoken - Yes to fluoride

The Hastings community has spoken and it wants to keep fluoride in the Hastings water supply.

Hawke’s Bay District Health Board chief executive Kevin Snee said with the majority of votes in the provisional result was 9,512 YES to fluoride and 5,461 no.

The district health board would like to thank voters who have clearly made their voice heard over this hotly debated issue, Dr Snee said.

“Not only is the science settled - so now to is the argument,” he said.

“The community had made the right choice fluoridation was the single most cost effective public health measure there was.

“We wanted to make our voice heard in this referendum, and I think we have done that. I would like to thank my staff especially clinical director of oral health Dr Robin Whyman who has worked tirelessly, attended countless meetings and helped advise at a national level.

“Fluoride is one of the most vexatious issues there is and this has been a challenging time for my staff and for the community being faced with so many opposing views. It’s a big issue and we have had to focus on it which has distracted us from the real work we try to do every day which is to provide a quality, safe health service and reduce disparity in our community.”

Dr Snee said he believed fluoridation of community water supplies was not an issue that should be decided by local authorities and he would be pursing that view at a national level in the near future.

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