The SA Council of Social Service have combined with a number of key groups to make a joint statement to the state government, ensuring safe, accessible and secure water is available to South Australians right across the state.
Consultation on the draft statement closed last Firday, with the finalised statement is expected to be tabled in Parliament later this year.
Key points made in the joint submission include the need for the state government, through the WSS, to:
- Be more ambitious and proactive in addressing drinking water supply challenges in rural SA
- Extend the scope of the planned stocktake of selected self-supplied communities,
- Commit to developing a basic level of service for all South Australians.
The SACOSS submission also urges the government to provide short and medium-term relief to communities which do not yet have sustainable access to safe water.
We need a proactive plan, rather than dealing with issues in a reactive way when they arise or hit the headlines.
SACOSS chief executive officer Ross Womersley said water was "simply fundamental", but should not be taken for granted.
"Unfortunately in some areas of SA, people are living without that most basic of necessities. This is not something that gets a lot of attention, unless an issue flares up in the media somewhere, but it is a day-to-day reality for some communities in regional and remote SA," he said.
"We are calling for a more ambitious vision which ensures access to safe, affordable and secure water supply for communities right across SA. We need a proactive plan, rather than dealing with issues in a reactive way when they arise or hit the headlines.
"This is the moment to do something - to once and for all address the embarrassing state of affairs where some citizens in our state do not have access to clean, affordable and reliable drinking water.
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