The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

John Sauer
Water Advocates

Water Is Medicine: Safe Water, Sanitation and Global Public Health Challenges

Bipartisan Congressional Water Caucus and Water Advocates Host Capitol Hill Briefing


What: Capitol Hill Briefing: "Water is Medicine:
Safe Water, Sanitation and Global Public Health Challenges"

When: Wednesday, July
29, 2009, 2pm - 3pm

Where: Capitol Visitor
Center, South Meeting Room

allow time for security clearance.

Who: Speakers will include noted public health experts
and leaders from prominent international aid agencies

  • Christine Moe, Director, Center
    for Global Safe Water

Emory University

  • Jae So, Manager, Water and
    Sanitation Program

Global Partnership administered by the World Bank

  • Rich Thorsten, Director of
    International Programs,

Co-founded by Matt Damon and Gary White

Moderated by John Oldfield,
Water Advocates


Evidence points to inadequate water, sanitation and
hygiene (WASH) as perhaps the world's largest cause of disease and as
critical to sustainable progress across a broad spectrum of development outcomes.
More than 25 diseases are caused by inadequate water and sanitation, creating nearly
10% of the global public health burden, killing more than 2 million people a
year (including more children than AIDS, TB and malaria combined) and leading
to 50% of the world's malnutrition. Diarrhea (a consequence of many of
these 25+ diseases) sickens over 4 billion people each year and kills 1.5
million of them, 90% of whom are children under five[1].

The U.S. public is largely unaware of
the extent and severity of the problem because for the most part few Americans see
the situation first hand. We easily flush away potential pathogens with our
toilet handle and have clean safe drinking water at the turn of the tap. This
is a global problem that Americans can do something about now. We have the technology and knowledge to solve this now.
Join us on July 29 to hear about solutions, including an increase in political
will and financing.

and WHO, various publications; Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria

Water Advocates is the first US-based nonprofit organization dedicated solely to increasing American support for worldwide access to safe, affordable and sustainable supplies of drinking water and adequate sanitation.