On 1 April the first European Citizens’ Initiative on water
will be launched by a Citizens Committee fully supported by the European
Federation of Public Service Unions. In all European countries our
affiliated unions with its civil society allies are preparing for
a campaign to promote implementation of the human right to water
will use the European Citizens’ Initiative as a tool to
put this issue on the European Agenda. We will demand legislation
that guarantees water and sanitation services to all in Europe,
that puts the right to water above market interests and that increases
European efforts to achieve universal access to water and sanitation.
all need potable water and a safe system of sanitation. The United
Nations have recognised the universal human right to water
but still many do not enjoy this right. This right must be implemented
within the EU. We believe that the EU has to implement the human
right to water insofar as water and sanitation services are subject
to European law (as a service of general interest), and that
the EU must promote national implementation of this human right
setting binding targets for all Member States so as to achieve
coverage in all EU Member States.
we want the EU to change their mind-set from its current focus
on competition and its completely market-based approach,
to a public service attitude and a rights-based approach. Water
limited natural resource and a public good fundamental for
life and health. Water is a natural monopoly and must be kept out
the EU must set targets and provide a legal framework that promotes
water operators in all Member States to use 1%
turnover for water operator partnerships in developing countries.
The final objective is to achieve universal access to good
quality public water supply and sanitation.
26 January the European Commission held a conference
about the European Citizens' Initiative .
European Commission Vice President Maroš Šefcovic told
the audience that he is confident that the Citizens’ Initiative,
one of the new democratic tools pushed forward by the Lisbon Treaty,
will bring Europe closer to its citizens and create a "genuine
European public space".
European public services unions are determined to take up the challenge
and to be the first to collect one million
in the EU-27 countries for this human right. But we will
in other European countries to show that this is not
only an EU-27 issue; this is a global issue. We make the same
as to the
EU-27 to all European and EU-neighbourhood governments
where EPSU organises workers in public services.
and sanitation are a human right!" "Water is a public
good, not a commodity!"