Archive for the ‘Drinking Water Advisories’ Category

Crisis on Tap Trail (youtube film)

Sunday, April 24th, 2011


EG4W + Ontario Canadian Federation of Students locals + World Water Day, Canada Water Week

Wednesday, March 9th, 2011


Boozhoo Ontario CFS Locals,

I was fortunate enough to speak to at the Spirit of the North conference to the Northern Ontario universities. We discussed plans for World Water Day (March 22/11) and Canada Water Week (March 14-22/11).  There was support for holding ‘Glass Action’ days on campuses.

I am attaching a poster, and will make some suggestions here if you choose to hold a ‘glass action’ day on your campus.  EG4W World Water Day 2011 POSTER PDF

It can be a one day event on World Water day, March 22/11 (register your event @

or the inaugural Canada Water Week event from March 14-22/11 (… or any day of your choosing!

Here are a list of suggestions, and links that you may find useful in planning your ‘glass action’:

-        stream “Glass Action’ film

-        stream “No Running Water” by the Winnipeg Free Press

-        show a feature length film, inviting the greater community to attend (i.e. Waterlife, Water on the Table)

-        encourage people to bring empty glasses for water… if you have it in your budgets, you could mail in glasses for your students, or ask your MP drop them off to the Prime Minister… you could also have empty glasses on hand for people… start a water glass drive now… insert the postcards into each glass, so people can just quickly fill it out, then drop it into a box for shipping. EG4W CFS letters to PM (4 per page) PDF

-        post the glasses you mail in on the EG4W website (glass counter:

-        invite the Chief or an Elder from a neighbouring community to speak at your event,  find out what their water situation is… perhaps you will be doing a water ceremony that day, ‘Greet Pray Semaa’, please send us this information so we can place a virtual semaa/tobacco leaf on our website (ceremony tracker:

-        promote the Mother Earth ‘Turtle Island’ Water Walk at your event. ( This year the Grandmothers and youth are walking and carrying water from all 3 oceans, and the Gulf of Mexico, and meeting in Bad River, Wisconsin where the waters will converge on JUNE 12th. I am helping coordinate this event. Water Walk 2011 Brochure PDF

-        PETITION: Manitoba Chiefs, “Water is a Human Right”

-        PETITION: Grassy Narrows background

-        Health Canada Drinking Water and Wastewater Info

-        Learn about Bill S-S11 NO to opening the door to privatization! Read this submission by the Council of Canadians to the Senate Committee Bill-S11 PDF

Miigwech for your support and your efforts.

Please forward questions, comments, poster designs to .

Miigwech, thank you,

Joanne Robertson

Founder, Empty Glass for Water campaign

VIDEO: Shoal Lake FN, Unama’ki + CIER

Friday, December 17th, 2010

“CIER, the Centre for Indigenous Environmental Resources, helps Canadian First Nations manage their environmental issues, including access to safe drinking water. Merrell-Ann Phare, the Executive Director of CIER, visited the Shoal Lake 40 First Nation reserve to better understand their issues. Her goal is to see how CIER might be able to help.”

Some of the standout information in this video:

- we know that 1 in 5 of our FNs lives with a water advisory, CIER tells us that in reality it is 1 in 3

- Shoal Lake FN has been on a boil water advisory for 18 years… that means that children have grown to adults with these conditions… they’ve never known anything different

- Shoal Lake FN supplies water to Winnipeg… ironic for sure… an observer would surmise from this action that Winnipeg’s children are more important than Shoal Lake’s children… we need to change this… and I’m sure that as more Canadians become aware of this, they will act to see that it is changed… this would be a good time to mail in an empty glass for water to the Prime Minister, for the people of Shoal Lake… 18 years – the length of time it takes for our babies to become adults – is long enough.

- Merrell-Ann Phare states that the biggest water issue for FNs is the ability to control and protect sources of drinking water… she explains that CIER’s work is to go upstream to see how the problem was created

- Shelley Denny shares that the same guidelines that apply to aquatic species applies to drinking water. This was very good to hear… lots of things I read and hear, people compartmentalize water into neat categories… but they are NOT separate issues…  quality and quantity of water for plants, animals, fish, and humans is all ONE issue… humans have messed the water up for everyone… it’s good to see people like Shelley Denny and the Unama’ki Institute that are combining traditional knowledge with science to maintain a healthy watershed.

Miigwech to Shoal Lake 40 First Nation, CIER and the Unama’ki Institute for your work.

CIER, Centre for Indigenous Environmental Resources

Unama’ki Institute

youtube link: RBC Blue Water Project 02: CIER

Drinking Water Advisories in Distribution Systems in First Nations Communities South of 60, June 2010

Sunday, July 18th, 2010

DWA_Monthly Report June 2010 PDF

Total number of communities with advisories = 114