Public Statements

Declaration of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network on the 10th Anniversary of the United Nations General Assembly’s Resolution 64/292 recognizing “the right to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation as a human right that is essential for the full enjoyment of life and all human rights”

23 July 2020

Resolution 64/292 approved by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on 28 July 2010 was preceded by many initiatives that over the decades insisted on the need for a formal recognition of the Human Right to Water and sanitation (HRWS). In the period immediately before the Resolution was approved, particularly since the early 2000s, such initiatives received a significant boost by the global mobilizations that formed part of the social struggles against the expansion of neoliberal policies since the 1980s, such as deregulation and privatization of essential water and sanitation services. …

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DECLARATION In rejection of the unjust demand of the multinational company Suez against the State and the people of Chile, in the context of the Sanitary Crisis caused in the City of Osorno

7 July 2020

In line with our Network’s position and with previous Public Statements about the serious consequences derived from the privatization of water sources and essential water and sanitation services, and related to the debates and public statements made during the X International Meeting that took place in Concepcion, Chile, in October 2019, with the participation of labour unions, social movements, indigenous communities and other relevant actors, we sign this Declaration jointly with the National Federation of Workers of Sanitary Works (FENATRAOS), Chile, the Public Services International (PSI) and the Confederation of Workers of Water, Sanitation and Environment of the Americas (CONTAGUAS). …

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Declaration of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network on World Water Day 2020 “Water, Territory and Substantive Democracy: building political projects in defence of life”

22 March 2020

We arrive to World Water Day 2020 in a context where the levels of severity and complexity of the challenges facing life in the planet seem to have escalated to a point that puts to the test even the capacity of the most powerful countries to find viable and efficacious solutions. …

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Declaration of the Plenary of the X Meeting of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network “Struggles over Water: Intersections of Class, Gender and Ethnicity”

11 October 2019

Qualitative and structural inequalities constitute one of the major obstacles to the advance of democratization processes, particularly class, gender and ethnic inequalities, among other. …

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Declaration of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network for World Water Day, “Water, rights, and utopias: priorities in the process of democratization of water politics”

22 March 2019

The title of our Declaration corresponds to the central theme of the IX International Meeting of our Network, which took place last September in the city of Joao Pessoa, State of Paraiba, Brazil …

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Inequality, injustice and defencelessness in Latin America and the Caribbean: on the need to develop alternatives in the face of a return of extreme authoritarianism in Brazil and the region

10 October 2018

Since its origins, our International Network has a strong commitment with research, teaching and interventions related to those social processes that, broadly speaking, produce and reproduce inequalities, injustices, and defencelessness in human societies…

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Alternative World Water Forum (FAMA): “Water is a right, not a commodity”

Brasilia, 17-22 March 2018

After the organization of 8 World Water Forums, including the 2018 edition that takes place in Brasilia on 18-23 March, and with hindsight looking back at the time elapsed since the first WWF held in Marrakesh in 1997, it is possible to have some clarity about some significant themes. The first edition of the WWF took place at the time of maximum global expansion of the neoliberal reforms characterized by de- and re-regulation, liberalization and privatization of essential public services.

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Declaration of the VIII International Meeting

“Water, power and impunity: social resistances and emerging alternatives in the construction of egalitarian and inclusionary water politics”

San Jose, Costa Rica, 3-7 April 2017

The relationship between structural social inequalities, water control, and the accumulation of social power in its diverse manifestations, cultural, economic, epistemic, political power, etc., is a fact that has been firmly established by a long-standing tradition in the social sciences dating back at least to the XVIII Century. Regrettably, our vast knowledge of this topic, and particularly of the concrete mechanisms that account for the processes of reproduction of inequality and injustice in relation to the access to and the control of water in their various aspects has not been translated in a greater capacity of human societies to reverse these processes and replace them by more egalitarian, rational and democratic social forms of relating to water and, through water, with the other species and the rest of nature.

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The plenary also produced:

    • Declaration about the Situation of Water in Costa Rica
    • On the Colombian Peace Process
    • Manifest for the Human Right to Water in Brazil
    • Declaration on the Mexican Situation

A Reflection on World Water Day 2017

On World Water Day 2017, we take advantage of the lessons that keep arriving from the Global North so we can avoid making the same mistakes in water politics and management worldwide. Today, the British newspaper The Guardian published a report about London’s private water company given a record fine for failing to comply with environmental standards. It related to “huge leaks of untreated sewage [emptied] into the Thames and its tributaries and on to land [… that] led to serious impacts on residents, farmers, and wildlife, killing birds and fish”.

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Public Statement of the VI International Meeting of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network

“Water, violence and utopias in Latin America and the Caribbean. What are the priorities for egalitarian water politics?”

Manizales, Colombia, 27-31 October 2014

The plenary of the meeting produced a Public Statement responding the central question of the event: What are the priorities for egalitarian water politics? The Statement includes:

  • Public Statement
  • List of main priorities identified in the VI International Meeting for the development of egalitarian water politics
  • Declaration in support of the defence of water as a common good, a public good, and a human right in Colombia.
  • Declaration of solidarity with the Mexican people for the death and disappearance of students in Iguala Municipality, Guerrero.
  • Statement on the water problems affecting Jalisco, Mexico: El Zapotillo. Impact on water cycles and violation of human rights. This statement was also published in the Mexican newspaper Milenio on 12 November 2014, with the support of a range of Mexican organizations.
  • Statement about the water crisis affecting the Sao Paulo Metropolitan Region, other cities served by the Sao Paulo Basic Sanitation Company (SABESP), and other areas supplied from the same water sources, in Brazil.Read more

Public Statement of the V International Meeting of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network

“Is Latin America moving towards a “post-neoliberal” water politics?”

Quito, 14-18 October 2013

The question that provided the central theme for the Fifth Meeting of the WATERLAT Network was an attempt to focus the meeting on a debate about the continuities and ruptures experienced by Latin America in relation to the period generally termed “neoliberal”, especially since the 1990s. Broadly speaking, we understand “neoliberalism” as the re-implantation by different means (democratic, authoritarian, dictatorial, etc.) of free market principles as the privileged mechanism for social re-ordering. In particular, we refer to the process of radical change in the role of the State through the policies of de- and re-regulation, commodification, and privatization of goods and services, the dismantling of the systems of social security and state protection, and the limitation or even cancellation of citizenship rights.

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The plenary also produced two short statements of support:

    • Declaration of solidarity in favour of the 5th March organised by organized by Uruguay’s Permanent National Assembly for the Defence of Earth, Water and Natural Goods.
    • Declaration of solidarity with the march organised by Ecuadorian social and indigenous organizations in defence of their rights and against the impacts of extractivism.
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Public Statement of the I International Meeting of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network

“The Political Ecology of Water in Latin America: defining a research strategy”

Barcelona, 14-16 October 2009

The plenary of the I International Meeting approved the strategic Objectives and Research Priorities of the Network.

Objectives Research Priorities