Some city water customers want fluoridation

Leaders in the cities of Derby and Eastborough, two of Wichita’s largest customers for water, have passed unanimous resolutions endorsing water fluoridation in Wichita. Nearly 500 local dentists, physicians and other health providers and about 50 state and local organizations support the campaigns by Wichitans for Healthy Teeth and the Kansas Health Foundation seeking to boost the city water’s natural fluoride level of 0.33 parts per million to the optimum 0.7 parts per million. A recent SurveyUSA poll, sponsored by KWCH, Channel 12, found that 54 percent of Wichitans surveyed support adding fluoride to the city’s water. Yet Mayor Carl Brewer has said fluoridation isn’t “that big on anyone’s radar at this point” and other City Council members seem similarly uninterested in addressing it anytime soon. But 12 years into the 21st century, shouldn’t Wichita’s leaders see some urgency in the city’s failure to get in on one of the 10 greatest public health achievements of the 20th century?