The safety of the city's water supply is a topic splashing around town. Lawrence resident Richard Simms has started a petition in hopes of persuading city officials to remove the sodium fluoride that's in the water you drink. He says it's a toxic chemical that's hazardous to your health.
And, he's not the only one who has concerns. A handful of cities across the country have turned their backs on the idea, saying it has severe adverse effects on people's health. Wichita and Hutchinson are among those cities that do not fluorinate their water. But officials from the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department say residents here have nothing to worry about.
"Fluoride is a naturally occurring material that would occur in public water supply whether we add it or not because it's part of our environment," says Dan Partridge, Director of the Health Department.
Health officials say it's a common practice to add the compound to the water. The American Dental Association says studies have shown fluoride is effective in reducing nearly 40% of tooth decay in both children and adults.
Simms is working to get 100 people to sign his petition. He says he wants enough momentum behind his movement so he can take it to the city and fight for his cause.