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Harper must support the human right to water

Please see below a letter to the editor from Maude Barlow that was published by the Globe and Mail this morning. Also, be sure to tune in to The Current on CBC Radio this morning to hear her talk about the World Water Forum.Water-resistant
March 20, 2009

So the Harper government’s effort to win a seat on the UN Security Council could be hampered by its decision to transfer aid from Africa to Latin America (CIDA Cuts To Africa Could Hamper UN Ambitions – March 16). There is an additional concern: I believe the Harper government should be denied a seat on the UN Security Council until it formally recognizes water as an international human right, a right it has rejected at the UN Human Rights Council.

Unsafe water and sanitation are the source of 85 per cent of all disease, and one in every six people on Earth has no access to clean drinking water. A UN covenant would clarify that it is a state’s responsibility to provide sufficient, safe, accessible and affordable water to all of its citizens.

If the government fails to act on the global water crisis, it simply does not deserve the leadership role it covets at the United Nations.

Maude Barlow, senior adviser on water to the president of the United Nations