Indian Country 52 #9 – Federal Tea
“In May of 2000, during a random test of the water supply in the farming town of Walkerton, Ontario, traces of e-coli were found in a shallow water supply well.
This was the result of cattle manure washing into the well.
People in the town started to get sick — with, ultimately, 3,500 residents falling ill. Seven people died.
The Ontario government immediately swung into action. By 2001, millions had been spent to improve the town’s water supply system. A formal judicial inquiry was held to determine what had gone wrong with the system.
While national media carried the Walkerton story in meticulous detail, politicians of every party wrung their hands and cried to the heavens for answers, all the while promising that this should never happen again. Ever.
While all this was going on, thousands of men, women and children in Ontario and across the country were boiling their water for at least a minute because what came out of the tap was toxic, dangerous to drink.
Had been like that for years.”
– CBC Radio, No excuses for boil water orders on First Nations reserves – Michael’s essay.
“Canada holds one fifth of the planet’s fresh water. Moreover, according to the United Nations development program, over 99.8 percent of Canadians have access to clean drinking water and clean water for sanitation purposes.
Yet in March 2016, Health Canada reported that there were 133 drinking water advisories implemented in 89 First Nation communities throughout Canada, excluding British Columbia. Water safety is in no way a new barrier to First Nations communities in Canada. In fact, one community in particular has been under a boil water advisory for two decades.
Following Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s election, Canada has been internationally praised for its multiculturalism and generosity in welcoming nearly 30,000 Syrian refugees between 2015 and 2016.
Meanwhile, the federal government has dramatically failed to provide one of the minimum standards of infrastructure to First Nation people. By failing to provide solutions to the drinking water advisories affecting First Nations communities, the Canadian government under Trudeau continues to perpetuate the nation’s settler colonial ideology.”
– The McGill International Review, No Clean Water for First Nation Communities: Repeated Settler Colonialism Within the Canadian Liberal Government.
Download the 18″x24″ poster (.pdf), Indian Country 52 #9 – Federal Tea.
Indian Country 52
Indian Country 52 is a weekly project by David Bernie that uses the medium of posters that promote issues and stories in Indian Country. Follow the series: Indian Country 52
Creative Commons License
This work by David Bernie is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. You may download, share, and post the images under the condition that the works are attributed to the artist.