Mackay goes ahead with removing fluoride

Following a decision to remove fluoride from its water supply, the Mackay City Council has given notice fluoridation will cease on November 7, 2016.

The council’s chief executive officer, Craig Doyle signed off on the following announcement:


Mackay Regional Council advises that a decision has been made regarding the ongoing fluoridation of drinking water at the Nebo Road Water Treatment Plant, Maywood Bores, Sanna Water Treatment Plant and Marian Water Treatment Plant servicing the communities of Mackay, Walkerston, Marian, Mirani, Seaforth, Ball Bay, Farleigh, Sarina, Sarina Beach, Armstrong Beach, Grasstree Beach and Hay Point.

Council decided on September 28, 2016 that the continuation of water fluoridation is not in the best interests of the Mackay, Mirani, Manan and Sarina communities. As a result, fluoridation of the relevant supplies will cease from Monday, November 7, 2016.

Enquiries regarding this decision can be made by contacting the client Service Centre on 1300 MACKAY (622 529).

Craig Doyle

Chief Executive Officer

Mackay Regional Council

Mackay made the controversial choice, 6-5, to remove fluoride earlier this month after a number of opinion polls indicated residents were in favour of the decision.

Mackay mayor Greg Williamson told journalists that he believes it is what’s best for the town.

“Everybody made a decision based on their research, and the people that they’ve spoken to along the way,” he said.

“For me the decision was that everybody I’ve spoken to … wanted it removed from the water supply.

“As a local council public health is not our domain. We should not be in this position but we are and so we had to make a decision.”

Following the removal of fluoride by Mackay Council, 24 of 77 Queensland councils will continue adding fluoride to their water supply.

The decision to go ahead with the decision has not gone unnoticed by the dental associations and various health departments and as such the Queensland government is facing calls to make fluoridation a compulsory practice.

Under legislation passed under Anna Bligh in 2008, Queensland towns with populations of more than 1000 were required to have their water supplies fluoridated, however this changed when the Liberal National government led by Campbell Newman reversed the requirement in 2012.

According to the Queensland Health Department, the fluoridation of drinking water is an effective, efficient and safe measure to prevent tooth decay.

More than 150 major health organisations, including the World Health Organisation, also support water fluoridation.