High Court finds Ashley Bloomfield's fluoride directive unlawful.

Wednesday 15 November 2023, 9:53AM

By Fluoride Free New Zealand


A High Court decision  issued last Friday in the New Health New Zealand vs the Director General of Health (DG) case, found that the DG acted unlawfully because he had failed to consider the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act (BORA) before he mandated 14 Councils to put fluoride into their communities’ drinking water. He was required by law to consider the BORA before he issued the directives.

This makes the inappropriate back-door mandatory fluoridation of New Zealand far less likely to succeed. Fluoride Free New Zealand says the ruling by the judge that New Health New Zealand and the Ministry of Health try to reach agreement on the outcome, or the judge will make the ruling, makes suspension of the directives highly likely.

It was ruled by the New Zealand Supreme Court in 2018 that fluoridation was a compulsory medical treatment and as such, it violates Section 11 of the NZ Bill of Rights Act. Friday’s significant High Court judgement will now require any new attempts by Councils to fluoridate their community’s water to be justified under Section 5 of BORA i.e. they will need to justify why this limitation, of such a fundamental right (not to be forced a medical treatment), should be violated.

FFNZ says there is no justification to impose a mandatory medical treatment for a non-transmissible disease that can easily be prevented by people taking personal responsibility. This is particularly so, given that there is now international scientific evidence that proves, beyond any doubt, that fluoride causes a range of serious health harms. Fluoride is not “safe and effective”’ contrary to what the Ministry of Health claims on its website.

Furthermore, FFNZ says NZ children’s dental health would benefit hugely if health authorities implement sensible public health programmes such as CHILDSMILE, which has had great, success in non-fluoridated Scotland, cutting serious tooth decay in half.

Fluoridation is the addition of highly toxic chemicals that would otherwise be considered “toxic waste” which the phosphate fertiliser industry would have to pay to dispose of. 

New research from the US Government also provides undeniable evidence that fluoride is neurotoxic even at the levels New Zealanders are exposed to.

Therefore, FFNZ believes that the ultimate decision of the substantive hearing, due to take place next year, will also find in favour of New Health New Zealand and fluoridation will be stopped.

Councils that have been given this directive should put all expenditure toward fluoridation implementation on hold and, instead, seek community input into the decision. A ruling suspending the directive would make the decision to fluoridate, a council decision, which requires consultation under the Local Government Body Act 2022  and, because of this latest ruling, also requires a BORA analysis.

Continuing with the costly implementation of water fluoridation is a reckless waste of ratepayers’ and taxpayers’ money, not to mention the significant health risks it subjects its communities to.