Supreme Court: Fluoride in Water is ‘in Breach of Human Rights’
Ruling confirmed that fluoridation is a medical treatment and not a 'supplement'
A Supreme Court has ruled that water fluoridation is a forced 'mass medication' and in breach of human rights according to the majority vote.
The ruling confirmed that fluoridation is a medical treatment and not a 'supplement' that is just "topping up natural levels” as claimed by the Ministry of Health.
The majority also ruled that the impracticality of avoiding fluoridated water makes it 'compulsory' in practice.
Three of the judges held that there was 'conflicting scientific evidence,' confirming that the science is not settled.
Chief Justice Sian Elias said that fluoridation was not prescribed by law, so is unlawful - adding section 6 of the Bill of Rights Act.
That was the correct decision in Fluoride Free NZ’s view.
The remaining majority held that fluoride was prescribed by law, and it was imperative to apply a balancing test to determine if the breach of the right - not subjected to medical treatment without consent, was justified in the case of fluoridation.
According to scoop.co.nz: Justice Glazebrook held that it was for a local authority to do this when making its decision, potentially taking into account specific local circumstances.
On the balance of information before the Court – the misinformation promulgated by promoters that water fluoridation measurably reduces tooth decay and presents no real health risk – two judges held that it was justifiable.
This is despite the court reiterating that it is now accepted that benefit for fluoride is from topical application, not from ingestion.
The Court did not consider information published since the original High Court case, and the recent US Government multi-million-dollar study by Bashash et al, published in Environmental Health Perspectives, carried out by top scientists and researchers in top North American universities - had not yet been published.
This study found that children exposed to fluoride at the same levels as New Zealanders had significantly reduced IQ, which could easily have shifted the Justices’ perception of safety.
Importantly, the Court held that this question of whether fluoridation is justifiable is to be determined on the balance of probabilities.
There is no requirement for absolute proof of harm, as long-maintained by the Ministry of Health.
As a question of fact, the two judges’ conclusion is not binding on any lower court or any statutory decision-maker.
With the overwhelming weight of scientific evidence that water fluoridation is ineffective and poses significant health risks, this opens the door to end the practice at any time.
The majority held that tooth decay was a condition in the community that a local council could address (through fluoridation) under section 23 of the Health Act.
It necessarily follows that any aspect of health in the community, good or bad, must also fall under section 23. This includes the current IQ level of inhabitants.
Therefore a local council is required to protect that condition under section 23. So if, on the balance of probabilities, water fluoridation reduces IQ significantly - and half a standard deviation (5 points on the scale used in recent studies) is significant - a council must not implement fluoridation, and in fact must cease it if it is currently in place.
Arguably, this mandatory requirement would override any direction that a District Health Board might give a council under the proposed legislation currently before Parliament.
Now that the Supreme Court has ruled fluoridation is medical treatment without consent, and with the mounting evidence that it is ineffective and carries significant health risks, it is time for politicians and the health sector to rethink the practice.
Its days are clearly numbered following this judgment.