Nov 21, 2014

Congressmen Promote Water for the World Act

The bill will provide safe water and sanitation to poor communities globally

This week, U.S. Reps. Earl Blumenauer and Ted Poe held a press conference to promote the Sen. Paul Simon Water for the World Act, HR 2901, and to celebrate World Toilet Day.

Currently, nearly 800 million people worldwide lack access to clean water, and 2.5 billion people live without access to proper sanitation. Every day, women and girls spend a combined 200 million hours collecting water, keeping them from school, work and family. Water for the World elevates water, sanitation and hygiene programs and leverages the impact of other development assistance, ensuring that they are targeted to help the world’s poorest.

“This is a truly bipartisan effort, supported by good people on all sides of the political spectrum,” Blumenauer said. “Congressman Poe and I have always said that politics stops at water, and we hope to prove that right over the coming weeks. The swift passage of this bill this Congress would be a signal that we can come together to improve America’s security, global health and the lives of women and children without burdening taxpayers or making enemies abroad. We’re committed to working with House leadership to get this bill onto the floor and then through the Senate as soon as possible.”

“It is unacceptable that in the year 2014 there are women who are still forced to walk miles to fetch water from polluted rivers infected with waste, parasites and other insects,” Poe said. “This ought not to be. Water is key to just about every kind of development. If we don’t get water right, it doesn’t matter how many schools we build or vaccines we pass out. This bipartisan bill will make U.S. water aid more efficient and effective. We have it within our power to fix this and make water a priority in any development discussion - like it should be.”

Photo: Tom Maisy/Wikimedia Commons