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Thursday, August 17, 2006                                                                                       View Comments

United Church considers boycott of bottled water

The United Church of Canada may ask its members to stop buying bottled water.

The request is part of a resolution against the privatization of water supplies that has been put before delegates at the church's general council this week in Thunder Bay.

Richard Chambers, the social policy co-ordinator with the national office of the church, said that water is a human right, and no one should profit from it.

"We're against the commodification, the privatization is another way to say it, of water anyway, anywhere," he told CBC News.

"And bottled water that we see being sold in Canada is just an example of that. The thin edge of the wedge of the privatization of water."

Chambers said congregations would be asked "to put their energies and their resources into making sure there is safe public access to water locally."

Ironically, the church's delegates are drinking bottled water this week at its meeting at Lakehead University. The conference facility was not equipped to provide drinking water.

Chambers said the church had asked for tap water at all functions, but a mix-up occurred.

Delegates are scheduled to vote on the private water resolution on Thursday.