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European Commission gives green light for water as a Human Right

16 May 2012
Boy drinking water
The European Commission has accepted and registered an initiative from the campaign “Water is a Human Right” .

The campaign “Water is a Human Right” invited the European Commission to propose legislation implementing the human right to water and sanitation as recognised by the United Nations. 10 May the Commission accepted and registered the initiative.

The campaign is a means of getting a commitment to the human right to water and sanitation,  and wants to change the mind-set in the European Commission from a market-based approach to a rights-based approach with the focus on public service. It aims to achieve global access to water and sanitation and to safeguard the limited public water resources for future generations.

Wide support

The campaign works continuously on broadening the support for their goals. Recently the Aqua Publica Europea, the European association for public water management, joined the campaign.

Anne le Strat, President of Eau de Paris and of Aqua Publica Europea states : 

«Beyond the catastrophic impact on health, a lack of water hampers economic, social and democratic development.

Inequality in access to water is one of the greatest injustices, affecting the poorest and the socially disadvantaged, especially women.

Water, essential to all ecosystems, should be viewed as a common good and a public service that must be managed in the public interest. That's why I call on all European citizens to mobilize so that the right to water finally becomes a reality for all. »

A critical resource

Also the director-general of the Brussels public water company, Christiane Franck, underlines the importance to protect water as a public good:

«Water is a critical resource but should not be the preserve of only a minority. Only the public management of water resources can ensure that everyone has access to the best product and the best service at the best price.

With Aqua Publica Europea, an association comprised of the key public actors in the European water sector, I am campaigning to ensure that water is seen as a public good, and remains in the hands of the public sector. »

The Social Platform

Another organisation that joined this campaign is the Social Platform: the alliance of European federations and networks of non-governmental organisations active in the social sector. The Social Platform and its members are committed to the advancement of the principles of equality, solidarity, non discrimination and the promotion and respect of fundamental rights for all within Europe.

Read more on “Water is a Human Right” http://water.tttp.eu/

 

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