Pétitions - 20 June 2014

en - The human right to water

The urgent need to protect and promote the human right to water and sanitation in the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Dear Ambassador,
We, the undersigned organizations, urge the General Assembly’s Open Working Group on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to explicitly affirm its commitment to protect and promote the human right to water and sanitation within the SDG framework and implementation. We join the repeated and insistent calls from civil society around the world to ensure that the SDGs are explicitly
aligned to the human rights framework.

Many of us have actively engaged in the Rio+20 process and have carefully followed and advocated in the General Assembly’s Open Working Group on the Sustainable Development Goals since March 2013.

We are deeply troubled that despite our clear and urgent call in May 2014, the Zero Draft (June 2, 2014) failed to include an explicit reference to the human right to water and sanitation.

For the post-2015 development agenda to reach its objective of being just, people-centered, and sustainable, the goals must prioritize—for present and future generations—the human right to water for health, life, food, and culture over other demands on water resources. This is even more critical given the key role of water for achieving other sustainable development objectives such as sustainable energy and food production, gender equality, and climate change mitigation.

The SDGs must be designed to catalyze increased capacity and political will for States to fulfill their legally binding obligations to respect, protect, and promote the human right to water and sanitation. In 2010, the UN General Assembly recognized “the right to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation as a human right that is essential for the full enjoyment of life and all human rights” (Resolution 64/292, para.
1). This important recognition by UN Member States ratified existing international law at the time as interpreted by the UN treaty bodies.

The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women provides that State parties shall ensure to women the right to “enjoy adequate living conditions, particularly in relation to [...] water supply”, (Article 14(2)). The Convention on the Rights of the Child requires parties to combat disease and malnutrition “through the provision of adequate nutritious foods and clean drinking water”,
(Article 24(2)). Persuasively, the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights concluded that the right to water is essential for securing an adequate standard of living and “inextricably related to the right to the highest attainable standard of health” (General Comment No. 15, para. 3).

However, our organizations fear that the human right to water and sanitation continues to be contested within the context of a global competition for scarce water resources. We are concerned that a development agenda that is not explicitly committed to upholding this vital human right may end up undermining it.
A failure to explicitly name this right in the SDG agenda would be a setback in the progress that UN Member States have made in elevating the recognition and protection for this fundamental human right.
We therefore respectfully call on you to show leadership and commitment to the human right to water during the upcoming sessions of the GA’s Open Working Group on the SDGs.

We urge you to insist on a human rights-based approach that:
a) explicitly names the right to water and sanitation in the goal on water and sanitation;
b) aligns targets to the human rights framework and guarantees non-discrimination, accountability,
and public participation in decision-making.
Thank you for your consideration of this important concern. We look forward to continuing this dialogue during the upcoming 12th Session of the Open Working Group.

1. Aboriginal Rights Coalition - Australia Australia
2. Ação Franciscana de Ecologia e Solidariedade (AFES) Brazil
3. ACLI Service Lecco Italy
4. ActionAid International Africa
5. Active Unemployed Austria Austria
6. Adorers of the Blood of Christ - A.S.C. Tanzania
7. AEEFG Tunisia
8. African Network on Environment and Water Africa
9. African Rivers Network Africa
10. African Women’s Network for Community Management of Forests (REFACOF) Cameroon
11. All India Dalit Mahila Adhikar Manch (AIDMAM) India
12. Alliance of Government Worker in the Water Sector (AGWWAS)-Philippines Philippines
13. Appalachian Faith & Ecology Center United States
14. Asociación Civil Hermanos de la Tierra Argentina
15. Asociación Folklórica Palos Cuerdas y Kotizas - PCK Colombia
16. Asociación Nueva Vida Pro-Niñez y Juventud El Salvador
17. Asociacion Raxch’ och’ Oxlaju Aj (Aj Green Earth 13) AROAJ Guatemala
18. Associação Moçambicana de Amor à Justiça, Paz e Solidariedade Portugal
19. Association for Indigenous Women and Peoples of ChadAFPAT Chad
20. Autonome des Travailleurs de la Sénégalaise des Eaux (SAT – SDE) Senegal
21. Avanza d.o.o Croatia
22. Berliner Wassertisch Germany
23. Blue Communities in Switzerland Switzerland
24. Blue Planet Project Global
25. Both ENDS The Netherlands
26. CEAMUJER Nicaragua
27. Center for Economic and Social Rights (CESR) Global
28. Center for Women Policy Studies United States
29. Centre for Natural Resource Governance Zimbabwe
30. Centre for Social Studies from the University of Coimbra - Portugal Portugal
31. Centre for Trade Policy and Development- CTPD Zambia
32. Centro de Estudios para la Gobernabilidad y Democracia, CEGODEM Nicaragua
34. CeVI - Centro di Volontariato Internazionale Italy
35. Chiadzwa Community Development Trust (CCDT) Zimbabwe
36. Church World Service Global
37. CILAP EAPN Italia Italy
38. Cimi Regional Conselho Indigenista Missionário - Regional Norte I Brazil
39. Citizens for Justice (CFJ) Malawi
40. Coalición de Organizaciones Mexicanas por el Derecho al Agua Mexico
41. College of the Holy Spirit Philippines
42. Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach United States
43. Comboni Missionary Sisters South Sudan
44. Comitato Italiano Contratto Mondiale sull’acqua-Onlus Italy
45. Comité Cívico no al trasvase del río Guarinó Colombia
46. Confederación Sindical de Comisiones Obreras (CCOO) Spain
47. Confédération des Syndicats Autonomes du Sénégal (CSA Sénégal) Senegal
48. Conference of Major Superiors of Men United States
49. Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd Global
50. Congregation of Sisters of St. Agnes United States
51. Congregation of the Mission Rome, Italy
52. Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy Ireland
53. Corporate Accountability International United States
54. Coordination Eau Bien Commun Rhône-Alpes France
55. Coordination Eau Île-de-France France
56. Council of Canadians Canada
57. CounterCurrent Germany
58. CRAUE (Coordination Rhône-Méditerranée des Associations des Usagers de l’Eau) France
59. Czech Trade Union of Health and Social Care Check Republic
60. Dalit Arthik Adhikar Andolan (DAAA) India
61. DECA Equipo Pueblo Mexico
62. DESCOLPAZ Colombia
63. Development Workshop Angola Angola
64. Dominican Leadership Conference / Dominican Sisters International USA & Rome
65. Don Bosco Network Italy
66. Dutch WASH Alliance The Netherlands
67. Earth Law Center United States
68. EarthLink Germany
69. East Timor and Indonesia Action Network (ETAN) United States
70. Eastern and Southern Africa small-scale Farmers Forum (ESAFF) Zambia Zambia
71. Ecological Society of the Philippines Philippines
72. EcoMujer e.V. Germany
73. El CEFOT Bolivia
74. El Grupo de Trabajo de Cambio Climático y Justicia (GTCCJ) Bolivia
75. End Water Poverty Coalition Global
76. Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria Nigeria
77. EPSU – European Federation of Public Service Unions Europe
78. European Citizens’ Initiative Europe
79. European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions (EFFAT) Europe
80. European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) Europe
81. European Water Movement Europe
82. Familia Franciscana de Colombia Colombia
83. Federación de Servicios Públicos, FSP-UGT Spain
84. Federación Española de Ingeniería Sin Fronteras Spain
85. Federación Nacional de Trabajadores del Agua Potable y Alcantarillado del Perú
86. Federation of Sisters of St. Joseph of Canada Canada
87. Federation of Trade Unions in Health Services-CITUB Bulgaria
88. Feminist Task Force Global
89. FEMNET - African Women’s Development & Communication Network Africa
90. FIVAS - Association for International Water and Forest Studies Norway
91. FOCO-Foro Ciudadano de Participacion por la Justicia y los Derechos Humanos Argentina
92. Food & Water Europe Europe
93. Food and Water Watch Global
94. Forum of Women’s NGOs Global
95. Franciscan Action Network United States
96. Franciscan Center for Defense Law Brazil
97. Franciscan Movement of Justice and Peace Bolivia
98. Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls MN, United States
99. Franciscans for Justice United States
100. Franciscans International NY - Geneva
101. Franciscans International - Bolivia Bolivia
102. Freshwater Action Network Global
103. Freshwater Action Network- Central America
& Asociación Regional Centro Americana Para el Agua y el Ambiente Central America
104. Freshwater Action Network- South America South America
105. Freshwater Action Network- South Asia South Asia
106. Freshwater Action Network-Mexico Mexico
107. Friends of the Earth US United States
108. Fundación Ambiente y Recursos Naturales (FARN) Argentina
109. Fundacion para Estudio e Investigacion de la MUJER FEIM Argentina
110. German Toilet Organization Germany
111. Gestar Development Corporation Colombia
112. Gestos-HIV, Communication and Gender Brazil
113. Global Interfaith WASH Alliance Global
114. Gram Bharati Samiti (GBS) India
115. GRÜNE LIGA Germany
116. Grupo Vecinal contra el Fracking Argentina
117. HakiMadini Tanzania
118. Hawai’i Institute for Human Rights United States
119. Hermanas de la Misericordia de las Américas Central America
120. Human Rights Institute of Catalonia Spain
121. IANRA: The International Alliance on Natural Resources in Africa Africa
122. IBON International Global
123. IERPE - European Institute of Research on Water Policy Europe
124. Indian Social Action Forum (INSAF) India
125. Indigenous Peoples Forum – India India
126. Indigenous Peoples Links (PIPLinks) United Kingdom
127. Initiative K 136 Greece
128. Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) Global
129. Institute for Ecology and Action Anthropology (INFOE) Germany
130. Institute for Multi-Track Diplomacy United States
131. Institute for Sustainable Development (ISD) Slovenia
132. Institute of Sisters of Mercy of Australia & Papua New Guinea Australia & PNG
133. Instituto das Religiosas do Sagrado Coração de Maria - JPIC Brazil
134. Integrated Development Initiatives & Alternatives Foundation India
135. International Presentation Association of the Sisters of the Presentation of the Blessed
Virgin Mary
136. International Women AIDS Caucus IAWC Global
137. IRSP - Integrated Regional Support Program Pakistan
138. Jacob Soetendorp Institute for Human Values Germany
139. Justiça Ambiental / Friends of the Earth Mozambique Mozambique
140. Justice and Peace Commission - Catholic Diocese of Auckland New Zealand
141. Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) - Australia Australia
142. Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) - Brazil Brazil
143. Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) - Italy Italy
144. Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) - South Korea South Korea
145. Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) - South Sudan South Sudan
146. Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) - Spain and Europe Spain & Europe
147. Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) - USA United States
148. Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation Committee; Divine Word Missionaries Chicago Province
149. Juventude Franciscana do Brasil - JUFRA Brazil
150. Keepers of the Waters Canada
151. KEPKA - Consumers’ Protection Center Greece
152. KRuHA - Koalisi Rakyat untuk Hak Atas Air Indonesia
153. l’association pour la défense des droits de l’eau et de l’assainissement (ADDEA) Senegal
154. l’eau est le pont France
155. La Asociación Intersectorial para el Desarrollo Económico y el Progreso Social
(CIDEP) El Salvador
156. La Coalición Llamado Mundial a la Acción contra la Pobreza (GCAP-ES) El Salvador
157. La Fundación Cosecha Sostenible de Honduras Honduras
158. La Fundación Red Nicaraguense de Comercio Comunitario (RENICC) Nicaragua
159. La Red Vida Latin America
160. Labour, Health and Human Rights Development Centre (LHAHRDEV) Nigeria
161. LACCASO - Latin American and the Caribbean Council of Organizations Central America
162. Land Access Movement of South Africa (LAMOSA) South Africa
163. Latin American Mining Monitoring Programme (LAMMP) United Kingdom
164. Leadership Conference of Women Religious United States
165. Les Religieuses de Notre-Dame du Sacré-Coeur Canada
166. Loretto Community United States
167. Mani Tese Italy
168. Marianist Religious Colombia
169. Marianists International United States
170. Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns United States
171. Medical Mission Sisters Global
172. Mennonite Central Committee - U.N. Office Global
173. Mercy Centre for Ecology and Justice Canada
174. Mercy Global Action, Mercy International Association Global
175. Misionario Oblato di Maria Inmaculato Latin America
176. Misiones Salesianas Madrid Spain
177. Mission Congregation of the Servants of the Holy Spirit Ghana
178. Mission Congregation: Divine Word Missionaries (SVD) Ghana
179. Missionárias Servas do Espírito Santo Brazil
180. Missionary Sisters Servants of the Holy Spirit Australia
181. Movimento comunitário, cultural, esportivo e ecológico da Média/ Baixa Serra do
Curral (MOC-ECO) Brazil
182. Movimiento de Justicia y Paz Bolivia
183. MuGeDe (Mulher, Genero e Desenvovlimento) Mozambique
184. National Alliance of Women’s Organisations (NAWO) United Kingdom
185. National Association of Professional Environmentalists Uganda
186. National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights (NCDHR) India
187. National Commission in Defense of Water and Life (CNDAV) Uruguay
188. National Dalit Movement for Justice (NDMJ) India
189. Natural Justice Global
190. Naturefriends International (NFI) Global
191. Niger Delta Women’s Movement for Peace and Development-Nigeria Nigeria
192. Northern Ireland Coalition Against Water Charges ICTU Ireland
193. Notre Dame de Sion Italy
194. Oblates of Mary Immaculate Canada
195. Oikos – Cooperação e Desenvolvimento Portugal
196. ONE (SINGAPORE) Singapore
197. Orden Franciscana Seglar Uruguay
198. Order of Friars Minor (Franciscans) Ireland
199. Organización Crecer con Esperanza Argentina
200. Our Water Commons Americas
201. Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum Pakistan
202. Pastoral Social de la diócesis del Alto Valle de Río Negro Argentina
203. PLANT (Partners for the Land & Agricultural Needs of Traditional Peoples) Brazil
204. Politica Internacional y de Cooperacion UGT Spain
205. Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) United States
206. Presentation Congregation Australia, QLD
207. Presentation Sisters Australia
208. Presentation Sisters, Aberdeen United States, SD
209. Public Services International Global
210. Red de Control Ciudadano Costa Rica
211. Red Departamental de Mujeres Chocoanas Colombia
212. Red Vigilancia Interamericana para la Defensa y Derecho al Agua The Americas
213. Rede de Solidariedade Brazil
214. REDES CHACO Argentina, Bolivia
215. REDES-Friends of the Earth (FoE) Uruguay Uruguay
216. Reformierte Kirchen Bern-Jura-Solothurn Switzerland
217. Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary Global
218. Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary, Western American Province US & Mexico
219. Religious on Water (ROW) United States
220. Religious Sisters of Charity United States
221. RIGHTS India
222. Rural Education and Action Development Society (READS) India
223. Rural Women’s Assembly Africa
224. Salesian Missions Global
225. Salesians of Don Bosco Global
226. Salezjanski Wolontariat Misyjny - Mlodzi Swiatu Poland
227. Save the Earth Cambodia Cambodia
228. Secretaria de Internacional y Cooperacion CCOO Spain
229. Servicios Ecumenicos para Reconcilliacion y Reconstrucction (SERR) United States
230. Sindhica Reforms Society Pakistan
232. Sisters of Mercy - Southern Province Ireland
233. Sisters of Mercy Northeast Leadership Team United States
234. Sisters of Mercy of the Americas Institute Leadership Team MD, United States
235. Sisters of Mercy West Midwest Community Leadership Team United States
236. Sisters of Mercy, Mercy International Association at the UN Global
237. Sisters of Mercy, Mid-Atlantic Community PA, United States
238. Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur Global
239. Sisters of Saint Joseph of Chestnut Hill United States, PA
240. Sisters of St Joseph Australia Australia
241. Sisters of St. Joseph of Lyons India
242. Sisters of St. Joseph North Bay Canada
243. Sisters of St. Joseph of Sault Ste. Marie Canada
244. Sisters of St. Joseph of Springfield MA, United States
245. Sisters of the Holy Cross United States
246. Sisters of the Holy Union of the Sacred Hearts Italy
247. Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Mary United States
248. Slaves No More Onlus Italy
249. Slovak Trade Union of Health and Social Services Slovakia
250. Society of Catholic Medical Missionaries United States
251. Society of Presentation Sisters of Australia & Papua New Guinea PNG & Australia
252. Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa (SERI) South Africa
253. Solidarity Workshop Bangladesh
254. South African Province of the Sisters of Mercy Africa
255. South Western Ontario KAIROS Canada
256. Spiritan Sisters Ghana
257. Steyler Missionare Ordensprovinz Österreich Austria
258. Study Centre for Governance and Democracy, CEGODEM Nicaragua
259. Suore Cappuccine del Sacro Cuore Italy
260. Surplus People Project South Africa
261. Sustainlabour Spain
262. SustainUS: U.S. Youth for Sustainable Development United States
263. Temple of Understanding United States
264. The Justice, Ecology and Development Office (JEDO) within the Catholic
Archdiocese of Perth Australia
265. The Mining Working Group at the UN (MWG) Global
266. The Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate Peru
267. The Nicaraguan Network of Community Trade (RENICC) Foundation Nicaragua
268. The Presentation Sisters Vice Province of Aotearoa New Zealand New Zealand
269. The Sacred Water Circle, Faith & the Common Good Canada
270. The Sisters of Charity Federation United States
271. The Sisters of Mercy New Zealand New Zealand
272. The Sisters of St. Francis United States, PA
273. Thought Forum and Social Construction (FPyCS) Argentina
274. Transnational Institute Global
275. Transport for Greater Manchester UNISON branch United Kingdom
276. U.S. El Salvador Sister Cities Americas
278. Umphilo waManzi South Africa
279. UNANIMA International Global
280. Union of Sisters of the Presentation of the B.V.M. US Province
281. Utthan India
282. VIVAT International Global
283. VIVAT International-India India
284. VIVAT International, Indonesia Indonesia
285. Wada Na Todo Abhiyan (Keep your promises campaign) India
286. Wasser in Bürgerhand (WIB) Germany
287. Wellness Foundation South Africa
288. West Papua Advocacy Team United States
289. Women Environmental Programme Nigeria
290. Women for Peace and Ecology Germany
291. Women United for Social, Economic & Total Empowerment (WUSETE) Kenya
292. Women’s Environment & Development Organization (WEDO) Global
293. WoMin, Gender and Extractives Africa Regional Alliance South Africa
294. Worcester Solidarity and Green Economy (SAGE) Alliance United States
295. Yamasi People United States
For Further information and follow up, Contact:
Meera Karunananthan
Council of Canadians’ Blue Planet Project

Email: mkarunananthan@canadians.org
Áine O’Connor on behalf of the Mining Working Group at the UN
Email: mgc@mercyinternational.ie