On 27 July 2022, Council was advised by the Ministry of Health it must add fluoride to the Cambridge water supply. This was NOT a council decision. The Ministry of Health – not councils – makes ALL decisions around fluoride.
Council has advised the Ministry it will take at least nine months to take this action, and only after receiving funding to help pay for the work required. As at November 2023, Council has not had any funding provided and nor is a funding agreement in place. This means any change is still some way off.
Note: Council is aware of the November 2023 High Court decision relating to the Director-General of Health’s decision to issue directives. The Court did not set aside the directives to add fluoride, so Waipā District Council is still legally required to comply with the Ministry’s instruction. We will continue to liaise with the Ministry of Health on any developments in this area.
Here is a copy of the letter received from the Director-General of Health on November 17, 2023.
If you wish to make comment or receive further information about this issue please email the Ministry directly on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is a link to the Ministry’s news release which may also be helpful.
Frequently asked questions
Not Council. A law change in November 2021 means it is the Manatu Hauora Ministry of Health – not councils – which make all decisions about fluoride.
No. Waipā has never added fluoride to any of its water supplies.
Yes. In July 2022, Council was directed by Manatu Hauora Ministry of Health to add fluoride to the Cambridge water supply. We have not been instructed to add fluoride to any other water supplies in the district.
That is a decision made by the Manatu Hauora Ministry of Health. Council has had no input into this decision.
There is no firm date yet. It is expected to be nine months from the date of a funding agreement being signed. As at November 2023, there was still no funding agreement in place.
Costs will increase slightly to cover the costs. Funding from the Ministry of Health only covers installation of plant required.
No. Adding fluoride to the Cambridge supply is something Council is required to do by law; it was not a Council decision.
If households stay connected to the water network, there will still be a network charge.