March 2018 continues progress on lifting long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserve
April 4, 2018 – Ottawa, ON – Indigenous Services Canada
The federal government remains steadfast in its commitment to ending all long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserve by March 2021.
Investments in water and wastewater infrastructure are working to eliminate long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserve and to prevent short-term advisories from becoming long-term. The Honourable Jane Philpott, Minister of Indigenous Services, is pleased to share progress made on this commitment in March 2018.
Four long-term advisories were successfully lifted in March 2018 in the following communities:
- Red Earth Cree Nation in Saskatchewan lifted a long-term drinking water advisory on March 2.
- Pauingassi First Nation in Manitoba lifted a long-term advisory on March 15.
- Poundmaker in Saskatchwan lifted a long-term advisory on March 20.
- Cowessess First Nation in Saskatchewan lifted a long-term advisory on March 22.
Additionally, four short-term advisories that were at-risk of becoming long-term were lifted. They were:
- Ministikwan Lake Cree Nation in Saskatchewan on March 1
- Fox Lake Cree Nation in Manitoba on March 8
- Sunchild First Nation in Alberta on March 8.
- Buffalo River Dene Nation in Saskatchewan on March 13
Finally, one drinking water advisory on a public system in Big Grassy River First Nation in Ontario became long-term on March 1.Indigenous Services Canada is working with the community on an action plan to restore safe drinking water to the community with projected lifting date of June 2018.
“Everyone in this country deserves access to clean drinking water. I am pleased to see a number of both long-term and at-risk short-term advisories lifted in March 2018, continuing the progress being made by communities and Indigenous Services Canada together. We remain on track in our commitment to lift all long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserve by March 2021.”
The Honourable Jane Philpott
Minister of Indigenous Services
- Budget 2016 provides $1.8 billion over five years to significantly improve on-reserve water and wastewater infrastructure, ensure proper facility operation, maintenance, and support training of water system operators. In addition, Budget 2016 included $141.7 million over five years in new funding to improve drinking water monitoring and testing on reserve.
- Budget 2018 proposes an additional $172.6 million over three years to help accelerate progress on lifting drinking water advisories, and to ensure more infrastructure projects can be completed by 2020 instead of 2021. Budget 2018 also proposes support for repairs to high risk water systems; recruitment, training and retention initiatives and the establishment of innovative First Nation-led service delivery models.
- Since November 2015, 57 long-term drinking water advisories (those lasting one year or more) have been lifted from public water systems through the work done in partnership with First Nation communities and partners. Thirty drinking water advisories were added during that same time. Indigenous Services Canada is working to address both long-term drinking water advisories affecting public systems on reserve and drinking water advisories at risk of becoming long term.
- There are currently 78 long-term drinking water advisories affecting public systems on reserve.
For more information, media may contact:
Office of the Honourable Jane Philpott
Minister of Indigenous Services
Indigenous Services Canada