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Regina city council approves fluoridated water

Regina City Council approves fluoridated water, but won’t be added until 2025. A motion to put the issue to a referendum was voted down.

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Regina City Council voted 10-to-1 to fluoridate its water.

The fluoridation can’t take place until upgrades to the Buffalo Water Treatment plant are completed, which is scheduled to finish in 2025.

Ward 10 Coun. Landon Mohl was the sole opponent to the motion.

“This is everybody’s drinking water that 230,000 people use,” Mohl told the Western Standard.

“There’s a wide range of concerns, so many I don’t even have time to list them all. One I just want to mention is specifically the person who started the petition has fluorosis herself.”

Ashley Symons’ petition against adding fluoride received 460 signatures.

“One main motivation for fluoridation of water is to improve the dental health of the low-income families in our city, however studies show that vulnerable children and families are at higher risk of the toxic effects of too much fluoride,” the petition’s preamble states.

“For those who do want fluoride, they can get it in toothpaste, dental floss, and mouthwashes.”

The petition listed numerous studies and authorities that downplayed fluoride’s supposed helpful effects and others that suggested health problems could ensue as fluoride collected in bones and the pineal gland over time, especially for infants.

According to the American Dental Association, “Dental fluorosis is the appearance of faint white lines or streaks on the teeth that only occurs when younger children consume too much fluoride, from any source, over long periods when teeth are developing under the gums.”

Gerry Uswak, registrar of the College of Dental Surgeons of Saskatchewan, spoke in favour of fluoridation, while citizens opposed made contrary presentations. Ward 2 Coun. Bob Hawkins, who introduced the motion, asked fellow councillors, “What story are you going to believe?”

After the motion passed, Mohl moved to put the issue to a referendum, but only received support from Ward 5 Coun. John Findura. The referendum would have cost $550,000 to hold, but the installation of fluoride equipment will cost $2 million, with $210,000 spent each year on fluoride itself.

Regina citizens refused fluoridation in four previous plebiscites in 1954, 1958, 1965 and 1985. In that final vote, 55% were opposed — less than the 60% opposition against allowing light beer at ‘Rider games and selling alcohol at Exhibition Park. In that election 1970’s mayor Henry Baker attempted a comeback and told TV reporters he was opposed to fluoridation because he poisoned rats with it while growing up.

“It’s come up before through a plebiscite and referendum. And I think with this specific issue that people deserve the right to choose,” Mohl said in the interview.

“The 100-plus e-mails we have all received at our city e-mail addresses showed 85% of residents are against adding fluoride to the water.”

Council also unanimously voted to partner with the federal government on its Rapid Housing Initiative to build places for people who face the biggest barriers to housing. The funding would create at least 29 new affordable housing units in Regina over the next 20 years.

The city must find a non-profit to operate the homes and plans to allocate an extra $1 million to cover non-eligible capital costs, such as furnishings. The city must submit a proposal by August 31 and deliver the project within one year.

The mayor and two councilors are in a drag show August 28 to fund raise for Lulu Lodge, a five-bedroom transitional home for homeless LGBTQ people aged 16-21 run by the John Howard Society, recently purchased with “generous support” from Saskatchewan Housing Corporation. It is unclear whether Lulu Lodge and the John Howard Society could be beneficiaries of the new housing initiative.

Council also passed a bylaw August 11 to ban conversion therapy, which involves discouraging homosexual sexual activity or convincing a transgender to identify with their natal sex.

Lee Harding is a Western Standard correspondent living in Regina.

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Declan McRoy

    August 16, 2021 at 12:28 am

    We shall all be killed in the make of …”science”…

    The argument that it’s for the dental well being of underprivileged people is beyond ridiculous!
    This is coming from the UN and us part of Agenda 21 .

    If you want to help poor people not get cavities, do something effective. Poisoning the city water supply is not it!

    J Guichon, you are a brain dead parrot! Quit while you’re ahead…

  2. J Guichon

    August 14, 2021 at 3:05 pm

    The foregoing four comments are not grounded in the evidence. Fluoridation is a practice with over 75 years of public health evidence that it is effective in reducing cavities by approximately 25% and that it is safe. At less than 1 part per million, fluoride has no harms. (A cosmetic effect can occur that is difficult to detect except when the tooth is dry and under a strong light.)

    This is common knowledge and can be found on the website of any health authority including the Public Health Authority of Canada and the Centers for Disease Control in the United States.

    There is a lot of misinformation and disinformation about fluoridation, as with vaccination. In other words, please look for trusted sources of information.

  3. K

    August 14, 2021 at 11:54 am

    Too much ‘vaccine hesitancy’ hey? Better numb the brains of the populace to stop them from thinking for themselves. You really think the government cares about your teeth? LOL get real, they wouldn’t push it so hard everywhere, all the time if it was beneficial.

  4. Andrew Red Deer

    August 14, 2021 at 6:50 am

    Poison in the arm, poison in the water, poison at City Halls, Legislatures and our so called Parliament. Time to switch off the tap. Deprive these monsters of THEIR livelihood.

  5. GonadTheRuffian

    August 13, 2021 at 5:06 pm

    You can never get enough poisonous chemicals in your diet.

  6. SaskFreedom

    August 13, 2021 at 3:59 pm

    This city council is bat-s***-crrazy. Everything that have done has been absolutely stupid, including this.
    Fluoride is toxic to the body, and furthermore, even though it can harden teeth, if it needs to be done, or someone wishes for it to be done, it can be applied topically on an as needed basis. Their argument that poor kids need it is bunk, because if you’re really poor you get free dental. Besides you don’t give an entire population a “medication/poison” and let 99% of them deal with it because 1% of the population might or might not have a 1% improvement. The direct topical application to the teeth “works” (mouthwash or toothpaste, or fluoride treatments at dentist) is better at hardening teeth, and typically has a less poisonous effect than ingesting water with fluoride which hardly touches the teeth but goes straight into your entire system where it harms everything else. Fluoride is outdated and there are better ways to harden teeth now anyway, such as not drinking acidic things, and using hydroxyapatite toothpaste and xylitol mouthwash, which have no harmful side effects and work just as good. I’ve seem high powered microscopic sections of teeth treated with nothing, fluoride and hydroxyapatite, then put in hydrochloric acid over days and the hydroxyapatite works just as good, and isn’t toxic to your pineal gland, unlike fluoride. And unlike fluoride, hydroxyapatite wasn’t an industrial waste that the Nazi’s discovered they could release into drinking water to “dispose” of it.

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Chu wants meeting with Gondek ‘to tell the truth’

Mayor-elect Jyoti Gondek told a city hall press conference she will not swear Chu in, when council meets for the first time on Monday.

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Embattled Calgary Ward 4 Coun. Sean Chu wants to sit down with incoming mayor Jyoti Gondek to plead his case about a sexual incident 24 years ago.

Gondek said Thursday she will refuse to swear in Chu during the first council meeting on Monday.

“I want her to hear the whole truth. I will provide that to her,” Chu told reporters at a press conference.

Chu also offered to sit down with other incoming council members — most of whom are calling for him resign — to explain his side of the story.

“I always work with anybody but they have only heard media reports … some of which has been untruthful,” said Chu.

“I will sit down in private with them and answer any question they have.”

He added he thought it would be a judge who does the swearing-in.

“I was duly elected by the people of Ward 4. I told the truth,” he said, adding was surprised at the amount of support he has received from Ward 4 voters in e-mails and letters.

Chu said this would be his last election as he was a proponent of term limits for councillors at three terms.

“The Sean Chu situation continues to get more disturbing,” Gondek said prior to the press conference.

“This is a travesty for the young woman that was courageous enough to come forward … she needs to have this taken seriously, and he needs to resign in order for that to happen.

“[Chu] can absolutely show up. He won’t be sworn in by me.”

In his only interview so far, Chu had told the Western Standard on Tuesday he had no intention of resigning, but did apologize to a woman he had a sexual encounter with 24 years ago.

Since then, pressure has mounted with Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, Gondek, most of the incoming council, and even local Conservative MPs all saying Chu should resign.

At the press conference, Chu apologized to the woman who was involved in the original incident and his family.

“My daughter is crying a lot. My children are going through a lot,” Chu said, asking for his family’s privacy.

“I’ve had CTV camping out at my house.”

Chu confirmed other details he told the Western Standard during the exclusive interview on Tuesday.

City of Calgary officials confirmed Chu won the election race in Ward 4 by a mere 52 votes after allegations surfaced last week of his involvement in August of 1997 with a girl who was just 16 at the time.

“This was nothing but a political assassination,” said Chu.

Chu, who has represented Ward 4 since 2013, also fired back at some media reports which he claims were completely wrong.

Chu, then a serving Calgary Police Services officer, said he met the unidentified girl at a pub near Macleod Tr. and 94 Ave.

At some point in their interaction, Chu caressed the girl’s leg, an incident that later earned him a letter of reprimand on his file.

Chu said the girl seemed interested in him so when he was off duty he changed into civilian clothes and went back to the pub to meet the girl.

The evening continued with Chu and the girl eventually heading to his home.

Chu “categorically” denied media reports that a gun was produced during the evening at his home. He said he checked his service weapon in at the police’s traffic office when he signed off duty.

He said at the home, the two had consensual foreplay before she asked to go home.

Chu also addressed a 2008 fight with his wife that ended with police responding and seizing a firearm.

The incident happened in February 2008, when Chu was running in a provincial election for the Progressive Conservatives in Calgary-Buffalo.

He said his wife ran to a neighbour’s after a verbal argument. Chu said his now ex-wife never intended to call police, but the neighbour did.

After consultation with the Edmonton Crown, no charges were laid.

“This was at the lowest point of my life,” Chu said, adding he sought mental health help after it.

“I have never threatened or harmed my wife or children.”

Chu served as a Calgary police officer from 1992 until he was elected in 2013.

During the investigation, Chu underwent a lengthy lie detector test asking him questions about consent and if a weapon was used. Chu said he passed all the tests.

Premier Jason Kenney described the allegations as “appalling,” but said he didn’t think there was any way for the province to remove a councillor who hasn’t been convicted under the Criminal Code.

Melanie Risdon is a reporter with the Western Standard
mrisdon@westernstandardonline.com

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WATCH: Vancouver restaurant served closure order for non-compliance with ‘Public Health Act’

“The operator is intentionally allowing the congregation of unvaccinated individuals at the establishment,” wrote the closure order.

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Another BC restaurant has been ordered to close its doors in the name of public health.

“I’m a mother of four,” restaurant owner Rebecca Matthews pleaded with health officials and police.

Corduroy Restaurant — nestled in Vancouver’s Kitsilano neighbourhood — has been offering service to customers without checking their vaccination status against COVID-19.

Under the BC Vaccine Card, people are required to show proof-of-vaccination against COVID-19 in order to access a variety of settings, such as dining.

In response to Corduroy having potentially committed the crime of serving unvaccinated customers, Vancouver Coastal Health Authority (VCH) sent environmental health officer Ryan Hammel — accompanied by Vancouver police — bearing a closure order for non-compliance on Wednesday.

“The operator is intentionally allowing the congregation of unvaccinated individuals at the establishment,” wrote the order, whilst listing off several more “health hazards,” such as “failing to comply with the Face Coverings Order.”

The closure order — signed by VCH medical officer, Dr. Michael Schwandt — says the establishment must remain closed until authorized by a medical officer.

Matthews told the Western Standard health officials showed up at her restaurant on Tuesday morning to “investigate some complaints.”

On Wednesday, Hammel served the closure order.

WATCH: https://www.instagram.com/p/CVQ1f8nhN2m/

“They wouldn’t even discuss anything with me,” said Matthews.

“We reduced our hours, we started doing counter service … these are all things that are — according to the provincial health orders — considered safe.”

Matthews said she’s looking into the closure order to determine how best to proceed.

“I have a family, but at the same time we still want to create a space for people that don’t have anywhere else to go … so we’re just trying to navigate the next steps in the best way for everybody, including my family. Our plan is not to just go away,” she said.

Wednesday is not the first time Corduroy has taken a hit for defying provincial health orders, as its license was suspended six months ago for offering in-person dining, when no such thing was permitted.

During a September 20 staff forum, the Chief Medical Health Officer of VCH, Dr. Patricia Daly, said vaccine passports in settings such as Corduroy’s are not intended to prevent transmission.

“The vaccine passport requires certain people to be vaccinated to do certain discretionary activities such as go to restaurants, movies, gyms … not because these places are high risk,” said Daly.

“We’re not actually seeing COVID transmission in these settings, it’s really to create an incentive to improve our vaccination coverage.”

A Go Fund Me has been set up for Matthew’s by a verified third party to cover legal fees so Corduroy can “continue to stand up for the rights of their patrons, their medical privacy and choice.”

Reid Small is a BC correspondent for the Western Standard
rsmall@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/reidsmall

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Gondek appoints controversial Carter as chief of staff

He received $130,000 in severance for his six months as chief of staff for Alison Redford.

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Incoming Calgary mayor Jyoti Gondek has appointed Stephen Carter, formerly Premier Alison Redford’s chief of staff and Naheed Nenshi campaign manager, as her own chief of staff.

Carter masterminded Gondek’s campaign and saw her come from well back in early election polls to an eventual easy victory over rival Jeromy Farkas.

Carter in February also threatened to sue the Western Standard when it published a story about a former Calgary city councillor filing an official complaint with Alberta’s Chief Electoral Officer alleging Gondek used third-party funds to pay for a city-wide brochure mail-drop.

Almost immediately after publishing, Carter threatened Western Standard News Editor Dave Naylor with a lawsuit. He tweeted:

“That was quick: Ok. You will be getting a letter from our lawyer shortly. Straight to Jono? Does he defend you as well?”

We told Carter that any further correspondence should be directed to our lawyers. 

He then took to Twitter to brag about his impending lawsuit to shut the Western Standard up. 

Carter never followed through on his threats.

Carter was once famously referred to as “Chief of Stiff” by the Calgary Sun after he become embroiled in a scandal where he didn’t pay his bills.

The Sun reported a company owned by Carter, Carter McRae Events, “owes more than $600,000, most of it to the University of Calgary, and hasn’t coughed up a cent in court-ordered judgments.”

He resigned from Redford’s staff and received $130,000 in severance for his six months work.

Stephen Carter (photo credit: Calgary Sun)

“If that’s the full amount, that’s still pretty eye-popping,” said Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith at the time.

“A six-figure severance for six months worth of work? An employee who voluntarily leaves should not get severance at all. This certainly doesn’t happen in the private sector.”

Carter, who had been Redford’s strategist in the 2011 Tory leadership race, became her chief of staff when she took office in October of that year.

He was also the mastermind behind Nenshi’s unexpected election victory 11 years ago.

Gondek also announced Amie Blanchette as deputy chief of staff, Catherine Seymour as operations manager and Allison Bates as communications advisor.

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