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NEWS: Ajax receives ‘blue community’ certificate from Council organizer Mark Calzavara

Mark Calzavara

Mark Calzavara

Durhamregion.com reports, “Ajax is feeling blue, and couldn’t be happier about it. The Town recently received a blue community award from the Council of Canadians, to recognize its efforts to protect water sources by banning the sale of bottled water in Town facilities, recognizing water as a human right and promoting publicly owned and operated wastewater systems. Mark Calzavara presented the award to Ajax council.”

“‘It’s more important than ever that we have communities like Ajax stepping forward and acknowledging (water as a human right) and working so diligently to make it a reality,’ Mr. Calzavara said. ‘Not only becoming a blue community, but the other work that you’ve done here in Ajax previously — being proactive about protecting your waterfront, providing the reusable tap-into-it bottles and the means to fill them, and making that accessible to people. That’s a real tangible example of your support for human right to water, and something that we really appreciate.'”

“Mr. Calzavara said the need to declare water a human right and protect it from commercialization is evident here in North America. ‘In Detroit right now, there are tens of thousands of people that are not on City water, who live right in the middle of the City, because they can’t pay their water bills,’ he said. ‘You see scenes that you would expect in a developing country — people moving water by hand from places where they have access to it.’ He said increasing awareness is key. ‘It is a message that really is aiming at engaging the population and getting them to take control and take responsibility for their water,’ he said. ‘Communities like Ajax are a great example for the rest of those communities.'”

“Local teen and water warrior Robyn Hamlyn helped put Ajax on the path to becoming a blue community. ‘I would like to acknowledge Robyn Hamlyn,’ Councillor Joanne Dies said. ‘She’s a remarkable young woman and she’s done a great deal of work to make us understand the challenges that we’re facing today with respect to clean water.'”

“Ajax is the fourth Canadian district to be declared a blue community, a project launched by the Council of Canadians and CUPE. For more information on the project, and other Council of Canada water initiatives, visit http://canadians.org and select water from the campaign menu.”

To read Mark’s ‘Blue Wave’ blog noting his trip to Ajax for this presentation, please see http://canadians.org/blog/?p=14400. More on our Blue Communities Project at http://canadians.org/bluecommunities.