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WIN! Kingston votes to ban bottled water

On July 14, Kingston City Council voted in favour of a resolution that states, “In accordance with this policy the sale and distribution of Bottled Water will be eliminated within City Facilities where Easy Access to Municipal Tap Water exists…” The resolution also states, “All reasonable efforts will be made in a timely fashion to provide Easy Access to Municipal Tap Water within City Facilities.” The resolution can be read at http://www.cityofkingston.ca/pdf/council/agenda/2009/A15_Rpt71.pdf. BACKGROUND On January 20, Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow and CUPE Ontario president Sid Ryan spoke in Kingston during their ‘Unbottle It!’ tour. On May 13, then Ontario-Quebec organizer Stuart Trew wrote, “Last night, Michelle Dorey of the Kingston chapter presented to a Kingston city committee, which has voted unanimously to approve a bottled water phase-out as recommended in a city report commissioned in January.” The Kingston Whig-Standard reported that, “A representative from the Kingston chapter of the Council of Canadians told the committee the organization saw water as a human right and ‘strongly opposed the bottled water industry’s commodification of this resource.’” The article noted, “The city needs to promote its water system, said Michelle Dory, and improve public access to fountains… ‘Bottled water undermines our efforts to achieve our goals,’ Dory said.” In order to win the subsequent vote at Kingston City Council, the Council of Canadians-Kingston chapter, the Polaris Institute and CUPE issued ‘Action Letter: Tell Kingston City Council to Support Public Water’.  The May 13 Kingston-Whig Standard article can be read at www.thewhig.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx.  To read more about the Council of Canadians ‘Unbottle It!’ campaign, go to www.unbottleit.ca. Congratulations to everyone who worked to secure this win.