What is the #1 Predictor of Running Water at Home?

Clean water is a basic human right but not necessarily an equal opportunity. In the United States, communities of color face unequal access to water – and this impacts 48% of households on Native American reservations. That’s why we’re rallying around the U.N. theme of “Water for Peace” on World Water Day, coming up on March 22. We’re also focusing on water for Native American Elders on Arizona Gives Day, which is April 2.  We hope you’ll join us.

Water is critical to life – humans can only survive about 3 days without it. Yet many of us take for granted this precious resource. Tribal communities know better. Many tribes live with contaminated water year-round, hauling water for daily use at home. And did you know it’s not where you live or your income that determines water access – it’s your race.

Hauling Water is Difficult for Elders

For Darlene Yazzie, the nearest water on the Navajo Nation is 9 miles away. In 2019, it cost her $1.10 plus gas money to fill up her two 5-gallon barrels with water. Darlene has to drive to a water station and haul the water home. Not only that, but she was told prices will be increasing. On average, Navajo citizens travel 48 miles to get drinking water. Can you imagine working this into your daily routine?

Last year, we delivered nearly 200,000 bottles of water to remote reservation communities. To learn more about water in Indian Country and why water access is different for tribes, download our free “Water In Indian Country” fact sheet.

Easing Water Scarcity

As the U.N. says, water is critical to sustaining life, stability, and peace. Indeed, water scarcity, climate change, and systemic racism are driving tensions up and resilience down. In a 2019 report named Watered Down Justice, EPA data confirms unequal access to safe drinking water in the U.S. And just last year, the Supreme Court ruled that “tribes have right to as much water as they need to establish a permanent homeland” on the reservations, yet the government has no responsibility to aid them with access to clean water.

Water affects everyone, so everyone needs to take action. You can help address this difficult inequity for Native American Elders – please donate for clean water today from now through April 2.

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