Water and sanitation

List Map
Catalyzing Rights and Water and sanitation

Relevant sources: ICESCR Art. 11(1); CEDAW Art. 14(2)(h); CRC Art. 24(c); CRPD Art. 28(2)(a); UDHR Art. 25

Core elements of the guarantee during the COVID-19 pandemic include:

  • Provide “continuous access to sufficient water to . . . populations living in the most vulnerable conditions” (OHCHR)
  • Prohibit water cuts and provide water without charge to individuals living in poverty and those otherwise unable to pay (OHCHR)
  • “[G]uarantee universal access to water and sanitation” on the basis that they are human rights and “because they are essential to achieving adequate hygiene that allows to curb infections and combat the pandemic” (OHCHR)
  • Ensure that “irrespective of the prevalence of the COVID-19 pandemic or other public health emergencies,” water disconnections are prohibited for those in “vulnerable situations” (OHCHR)
  • Ensure the “availability, accessibility and affordability” of water and sanitation services (UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights to safe drinking water and sanitation)

Further guidance can be found here: UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; UN Water

Show me of advances during COVID-19

Showing 9 matching measures.

Measure Country
Governor Murphy Signs Executive Order Extending Utility Shutoff Moratorium Through June 30, 2021 United States

In this executive order, the governor noting that “many New Jersey residents continue to experience financial hardship as a result of the Public Health Emergency, which may hinder their ability…

H.R.1319 – American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 United States

The law contains a section entitled “funding for water assistance program” under which funding “is appropriated to the Secretary of Health and Human Services . . . for grants to…

Chairman’s Eighth Set of Orders under G.L. c. 25, § 4B United States

A letter from the Chairman of the Department of Public Utilities of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts addressed to, among others, “the investor-owned water distribution companies . . . regulated by…

COVID-19 Framework for Local Decision Making on Gypsy/Traveller Support United Kingdom

This document, which aims to “provide a framework for supporting Gypsy/Traveller communities living on public and private sites, and in unauthorised encampments in Scottish Local Authorities during the COVID-19 outbreak”…

Economic Stimulus and Relief Package: Impact of COVID-19 on the Economy and Households Namibia

As part of this package’s provision on “support to households” the “[g]overnment will ensure that water points are kept open without a need for water cards during lockdowns, through NamWater…

Presidential Address on Enhanced Measures in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic by H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta, C.G.H, President and Commander-in-Chief of Kenya Defiance Forces on 6th April, 2020 Kenya

In this statement, President Kenyatta “direct[s] the Nairobi Metropolitan Service, to not only continue but expand their provision of free water to all our informal settlements.”

COVID-19 Response: Antigua Public Utilities Authority Antigua and Barbuda

The government “enlist[ed]” the “assistance” of APUA (Antigua Public Utilities Authority) to: “cushion the pain of unemployment.” Among other measures, APUA “agreed [t]o cease all disconnections of APUA water and…

Directive Implementing Executive Orders 2-2020 and 3-2020 Providing Measures to Limit Foreclosures, Evictions, and Disconnections from Service United States

According to this directive from the governor of Montana, “no business or political subdivision of the State supplying . . . water” among other utilities, “for use, in whole or…

Supreme Decree No. 044-2020-PCM (Decreto Supremo No. 044-2020-PCM) Peru

The “Supreme Decree declaring a State of National Emergency due to the serious circumstances that affect the life of the Nation as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak” (No. 044-2020-PCM)…

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