Target: German Bundestag
Goal: Express outrage that the German legislature has voted that access to water is not a human right
The German Bundestag, or lower house of legislature, recently voted to reject a measure that would have made access to water a human right, and prevented privatization of water resources. Water worldwide has been undergoing intense privatization and is increasingly sold by governments to companies who then sell the water to people for a profit.
What was once a free, commonly held resource is now being exploited for profit. And when people who need water cannot afford it, they must go without. This is how it is in places where water is not given the status of a human right. Germany, by rejecting the very basic idea that it is a fundamental right to all people to have water to drink, is paving the way for uncontrolled and dangerous privatization of water resources in the country.
The measure was proposed by the left in the legislature but was voted down primarily by the center-right party the CDU. Germany seems to be ignoring the obvious reality that access to water is affirmed as a human right in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This document is non-binding, but it is still an official guideline that nearly every country in the world has outwardly agreed with. The document states that “everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family,” which would clearly include water.
Germany should live up to its status as a rights-defending country worldwide by affirming at home that water is a human right that should not be privatized and sold for profit to average people. Water has always been held as a public resources, accessible to anyone. That should not change.
Sign the petition below to express disappointment to the German legislature for its vote.
Dear members of the Bundestag,
I am writing to express my serious disappointment that you have recently voted not to affirm access to water as a universal human right in Germany. By opting not to do this, you are opening the way for water, which has since the beginning of history been held as a common, public resource, to be completely privatized.
Once privatized, water can be used as predatory leverage on average people, who will have no access to water if they eventually cannot afford it. This is a denial of their human right to water, which is against the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The UDHR guarantees a standard of living adequate for everyone’s well-being. Water is obviously an essential component to healthy human life. Please reconsider you decision to reject the status of access to water as a human right.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Sergiu Bacioiu via Wikimedia