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DEQ union comes out against water fluoridation

The union local representing Oregon Department of Environmental Quality employees has gone on record in opposition to drinking water fluoridation.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 3336 voted 28 to 18 in late April against flouridation in general. The information was publicized via a news release sent out Monday by Clean Water Portland, opponents of the fluoridation measure on Portland’s May 21 ballot.

According to a letter the DEQ union local sent to Clean Water Portland: “Those speaking in favor of the motion expressed concerns about potential water quality degradation from by-products of fluoride production and uncertain health effects of fluoride ingestion. Those speaking against the motion stated that the anti-fluoridation arguments were over-simplified and misleading and that our local should not take a position on such a divisive issue.”

The local stressed that it was not taking a position on the Portland ballot measure. It never invited either fluoridation supporters or opponents to address its membership.

For more on the DEQ employee union’s position: www.afscme3336.org/index.cfm?zone=/unionactive/view_article.cfm&HomeID=279406.

The DEQ union puts local environmental regulators in sync with their colleagues in the union representing headquarters employees of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. That union has a longstanding position against fluoridation. For more on its reasoning, see: www.nteu280.org/Issues/Fluoride/NTEU280-Fluoride.htm.