After the EU elections, the right2water European Citizens Initiative (ECI) is going to be discussed again at the European Parliament (EP). However, this time it is possible that all the elements that the European Commission left out in their positive response to our ECI will be included. The organisers stated: “We will never stop repeating it, until we get it: we want European Union legislation to implement the Human Right to water as defined by the United Nations”.
The EP report is being coordinated by Lynn Boylan, an Irish Member of the European Parliament (MEP).
But the parliamentary front it is not the only one where things are bubbling up. After the successful campaign in Greece to stop water privatization, people are getting organized in Ireland to fight for the right to water. The Irish Government created a new water company (Irish Water) that has started to introduce water meters that bring water charges. This has created uproar against the Government. Irish campaigners have organized the biggest anti-austerity demo in a decade.
Also in France campaigners are fighting against water disconnections, which are illegal. They have managed to get private operator, Veolia, to pay over 6000€ in compensation to a family for having denied their basic right to water. The same kind of mobilization is happening in Spain. It is estimated that last year private operators threatened over 900000 families with disconnection from their water supply. In Portugal, there was a minor setback. The parliament rejected a popular petition to stop water privatization drawn up by friends of Agua de todos. Nevertheless, the campaign continues. The determination and popular support are there and they will continue to mobilize. “We didn’t collect over 40.000 signatures for nothing”, said the organisers….
This is just a glimpse of all that is happening. Wait to hear more!