On 21 March 2023, the eve of the UN Water Conference, hundreds of representatives from water justice movements, indigenous peoples, civil society networks and activists from around the world gathered at the All Souls Center in New York to launch the Water Justice Manifesto.
End Water Poverty partnered with the People’s Water Forum, FANMex, Redes del Agua, Coalition Eau, Butterfly Effect, Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, and the Africa Water Justice Network to make the manifesto and the event possible.
The manifesto, which was endorsed by more than 500 CSOs, networks and activists, calls on UN Member States to recognise that water and sanitation are fundamental human rights, to centre rights-holders and put people and planet before profit.
During the launch, the manifesto organisers presented hard copy summaries of the manifesto to UN Special Rapporteurs on the rights to safe water and sanitation Pedro Arrojo-Agudo and the rights of indigenous peoples Francisco Calí Tzay, as well as Programme Director of the UN Water Conference, the Government of the Netherlands’ Nathalie Olijslager.
“I am optimistic for concrete results at UN 2023 Water Conference because of the spirit of people, the multitude of movements, the united manifesto to work and fight for justice, the clamour of those silenced and criminalised,” said the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights to water and sanitation Pedro Arrojo-Agudo. “The UN will have to reflect on the demands being made of it.”
The Water Justice Manifesto was later read at the closing plenary of the conference on 24 March by the Director of the Blue Planet Project Marcela Olivera, on behalf of the People’s Water Forum.
Want to find out more?
- Read the full manifesto here (English) or here (Spanish).
- Read the press statement on the manifesto.
- Read an article on the conference and the manifesto published in The Guardian.
- Watch the manifesto being read out during the closing plenary of the conference.