§ Mr. Best
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services, further to his answer to the hon. Member for Burton (Mr. Lawrence) of 18 July, Official Report, c. 32, for what purposes annual grants have been made to the Fluoridation Society by his Department; whether the increase in the size of the grant was in response to requests by the Fluoridation Society or on the initiative of his own Department; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. John Patten
Successive Governments have been convinced of the safety and effectiveness of fluoridation as a means of preventing dental decay and have made grants to the Fluoridation Society to assist it in promoting a greater public awareness of the value of fluoridation. Apart from small increases in the grant to take account of rises in costs, significant increases were made in the 1980–81 and 1981–82 financial years in response to the society's request for a raised level of funding to enable it to operate more effectively and employ a full-time secretary at a realistic salary.