Photo credit: Melissa Mays, Water You Fighting For?
In the last month, the media has been abuzz with stories of people organizing and successfully blocking the corporate takeover of water. Our organizing is proving that when people stand up, they win and preserve the human right to water. Below are three stories from the front lines of this movement:
We help prevent a bad situation from getting worse
Last week in Flint, Michigan, Corporate Accountability International and our allies learned that the city had issued a request for proposals to outsource the management and operations of the city’s neglected and mismanaged water system. Such a step runs counter to what people in Flint have been calling for: investment in the system and democratic accountability. In fact, as we’ve seen time and time again, engaging with a private water corporation would result in just the opposite.
So what did people do? They organized. Last Friday, as executives from water corporations gathered at the Flint municipal water building, Flint residents protested outside and exposed the city’s terrible plan. Check it out here!
Kunkletown says “no” to Nestlé
Recently, in a small Pennsylvania town called Kunkletown, residents learned that Nestlé had surreptitiously made plans to extract more than 73 million gallons of water from their aquifer to be bottled and sold for profit.
In this Truthout piece on the Kunkletown site fight, Corporate Accountability International’s John Stewart sets the record straight on private water, water scarcity, and diminishing investments in public water infrastructure: “Companies like Nestlé don’t see this situation as a public health crisis. They see it as a business opportunity.” But once again, people are turning the tide against corporate takeovers and, in Kunkletown, the city is poised to block Nestlé’s bottling.
Congress takes a stand
Two weeks ago, during the World Bank’s Spring Meetings, Rep. Gwen Moore issued a powerful condemnation of its self-dealing in water around the globe. Moore’s bold stance was compelled by the water crisis in Flint and her own experiences with unsafe water in Africa. In this Alternet piece, Corporate Accountability International media director Jesse Bragg ties the struggle for water rights around the globe together.
Around the world corporate-driven efforts to commodify water are being met with fierce and unwavering opposition, and Corporate Accountability International and our partners are leading the way. From Pennsylvania to Flint to Manila to Lagos, it is up to us to hold our leaders to account and defend the human right to water from corporate greed.