Water Everywhere…but not a drop to drink


Episode Description

Canadians are big water users and are also advanced in water treatment and distribution technologies. Yet, in one of the most water rich countries in the world, approximately one out of every five First Nations communities in Canada lacks access to clean, safe and sustainable drinking water. Why do some First Nations communities have these problems and others do not and are thriving? How can there be economic independence and advancement for these communities without this basic human right? The Brothers travel to First Nations communities in search of the answers.

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26 comments on “Water Everywhere…but not a drop to drink

  1. Hi guys – loved the episode on First Nations communities, but just to clarify on one of your opening remarks…reserves were not only created through the treaty process, as treaties were only negotiated with some First Nations (and almost none in BC). Reserves were created by the Indian Act, which was intended to situate all First Nations people as ‘wards of the state’, no free, equal citizens. Until the 1950’s / 60’s, Indians were not allowed to leave ‘reserve lands’ without a pass issued by a white Indian Agent. I think this is really important to the overall context of your episode, as your footage shows what living conditions on these reserve lands are really like…now it’s time for Canadians to know why. Those same models of houses (a take-off from post WWII military housing) were built on every reserve in Canada, and every one of them ultimately became infested with mold. I know plenty of white people who still think First Nations people negotiated these parcels of land along with free housing, free medical etc., but this is not true either. Thanks again for a great show! It is a reminder that we all have a lot of work to do on many fronts.

    Lou-ann Neel
    Kwakwaka’wakw Nation

  2. Your film “Water everywhere – but not a drop to drink” is very powerful. Congratulations! I am a member of the First Unitarian Congregation of Ottawa and we would like to show this film to our members on September 13. I wonder if I could download this movie and show it from my computer on the screen.

    Looking forward to your answer,

  3. I cannot believe that Mary, after watching your presentation on “Water Everywhere…but not a drop to drink”, all she had to comment on and assume is the First Nations are responsible for the Plastic Bottle problem. If she watched the show at all, she would have seen that most of these Remote Reserves aren’t near the Ocean. She didn’t seem to realize that if the waters were polluted by companies serving her needs and therefore causing a need for drinkable water is available to these people which by the way isn’t available for these people most of the time. Would it not be more logical to assume they’d be transporting larger containers of water rather than small bottles?
    How the water was made undrinkable is the issue. It’s not only the First Nations that were affected but the whole wildlife ecosystem that was/is affected. What is the bigger problem is that what is not in the public eye can easily be swept under the carpet and ignored. It’s typical for average people to not imagine going through such hardship and death from a lack of drinkable water. But people like her may yet feel the wrath of industrial pollution but until it knocks on her door she may never know.
    Worrying about bottles that 7 billion people on earth are responsible?…. not 1,172,790 Indian, Métis and Inuit people — 3.8 per cent of Canada’s total population. That’s 1000 non-first nation persons to 1 first nations person. And let me tell you not all to them are on the reserves. And 40% of First Nations people live on the reserves. With that there are 14,000 non-First Nations persons on the planet for one First Nations person in a reserve.
    I hope this illustrates how preposterous her statement is. Math must not have been her subject.