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'Water as human right' campaign receives major push from Protestant group


(RNS/ENInews) Church-backed campaigners say they have received a boost from a global body representing 80 million Protestants that has called access to water a basic human right.

“Preserving the world’s water resources, and securing access to water for all, is one of the greatest challenges we face,” Maike Gorsboth, the Geneva-based coordinator of the secretariat of the Ecumenical Water Network told ENInews.

Gorsboth was speaking after the World Communion of Reformed Churches, at its founding meeting in June in Grand Rapids, Mich., urged its churches to support and adopt a declaration on “Water as a Human Right and a Public Good.”

The declaration, drawn up by Swiss and Brazilian churches, urges that “the human right to water be recognized at the local and international level in the same way as the right to adequate food.”

It says nations should guarantee everyone access to drinking water, fixing an affordable price, and involve local authorities and communities in decisions on the use of water resources.