Water is essential to human life — literally. We can survive up to three weeks without food, but only three days without water. This makes having dirty water in our taps even more concerning and shouldn’t be something we have to worry about in our modern times.
However, many people are still dealing with this problem, especially those in Canada’s First Nations. We’ll discuss why Indigenous communities are dealing with this issue in this post.
In the placement of Native American Reserves, consideration wasn’t always taken regarding how the quality of life would be for residents. Placing communities in lowlands, swamplands, and other areas that typically aren’t close to clean water is one of the reasons for this issue.
Badly Maintained Facilities
Water transportation systems are like anything else that works constantly: they need regular maintenance. When the equipment used to provide drinking water fails or isn’t cared for, the product becomes contaminated. This is denial of a basic human right — not only do people need water, but they need it to be clean as well.
Many indigenous communities in Canada report having boil advisories for months or even years, a sign that something must be done to provide people with their basic needs for survival. Boiling water to make it safe for consumption is an avoidable occurrence, and one that non-indigenous communities rarely deal with. This is an unfair advantage that should never exist in the first place — all humans deserve clean drinking water.
The people of the First Nations deserve to have their basic human needs met, and it’s unfair to ask them to continue this way. Having to buy bottled water, travel for fresh water, or boil the unsafe water in their taps is denying indigenous people a basic human right, and it’s not even close to acceptable.
Considering all that the First Nations have given up, they should be treated with the utmost respect and fairness — which they have been denied for far too long. Safe drinking water would be an important first step in repairing the many injustices that these communities have seen.
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