Maude Barlow
( 2005 , Canada )

...for their exemplary and longstanding worldwide work for trade justice and the recognition of the fundamental human right to water.

Under the current model of globalization, everything is for sale. Areas once considered our common heritage are being commodified, commercialized and privatized at an alarming rate.


Both Maude Barlow and Tony Clarke are long-term activists on trade and justice issues, now with a special focus on water, whose campaigning lives have intertwined for many years.

Contact

Maude Barlow
Council of Canadians
300-251 Bank Street
Ottawa, ON K2P 1X3
CANADA

http://www.canadians.org/
http://www.blueplanetproject.net/

Biography

Maude Barlow, born in 1947, has been a high-profile leader in the women’s movement in Canada, serving as the Director of Equal Opportunity for the City of Ottawa and leading a national coalition against violence against women.

She later became Pierre Trudeau’s advisor on women’s issues when he was Prime Minister in 1983-84.

In 1985, she founded the Council of Canadians, Canada’s largest citizens’ advocacy organisation, which works to safeguard Canada’s universal social security system and its water and energy heritage, where she served as the elected chairperson from 1988. Today, she is the Honorary Chairperson.

The Council of Canadians has also been a leading voice in the international search for a more just and sustainable trade system and, through its Blue Planet Project, fights for the universal right to water.

Barlow is the author and co-author of dozens of reports as well as 18 books on all aspects of globalisation and the theft of the “global commons”, including her latest, Blue Future: Protecting Water for People and The PlanetForever and Boiling Point, Government Neglect, Corporate Abuse and Canada’s Water Crisis.

Furthermore, Maude Barlow chairs the board of Washington-based Food and Water Watch. She also serves on the Executive Committee of the Global Alliance for the Right of Nature;and is a Councillor with the Hamburg-based World Future Co …

Maude Barlow, born in 1947, has been a high-profile leader in the women’s movement in Canada, serving as the Director of Equal Opportunity for the City of Ottawa and leading a national coalition against violence against women.

She later became Pierre Trudeau’s advisor on women’s issues when he was Prime Minister in 1983-84.

In 1985, she founded the Council of Canadians, Canada’s largest citizens’ advocacy organisation, which works to safeguard Canada’s universal social security system and its water and energy heritage, where she served as the elected chairperson from 1988. Today, she is the Honorary Chairperson.

The Council of Canadians has also been a leading voice in the international search for a more just and sustainable trade system and, through its Blue Planet Project, fights for the universal right to water.

Barlow is the author and co-author of dozens of reports as well as 18 books on all aspects of globalisation and the theft of the “global commons”, including her latest, Blue Future: Protecting Water for People and The PlanetForever and Boiling Point, Government Neglect, Corporate Abuse and Canada’s Water Crisis.

Furthermore, Maude Barlow chairs the board of Washington-based Food and Water Watch. She also serves on the Executive Committee of the Global Alliance for the Right of Nature;and is a Councillor with the Hamburg-based World Future Council.

She is the recipient of fourteen honorary doctorates and many awards, including the 2005 Lannan Cultural Freedom Fellowship, the 2008 Canadian Environmental Award, the 2009 Earth Day Canada Outstanding Environmental Achievement Award and the 2011 EarthCare Award, the highest international honour of the Sierra Club (US).

In 2008/2009, Maude Barlow served as Senior Advisor on Water to the 63rdPresident of the United Nations General Assembly. She was the leader in an international campaign for a United Nations Convention on the Right to Water. On July 28, 2010, the United Nations General Assembly voted in favour of recognising water and sanitation as human rights. The resolution – put forward by Bolivia and co-sponsored by 35 states – passed with 122 states voting in favour and 41 abstaining.

Together, Maude Barlow and Tony Clarke (who received the Award together with Barlow) played a key role in building opposition to, and defeating, the Multilateral Agreement on Investment (MAI), and in campaigning against the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) free-trade agenda, especially at Seattle (1999) and Cancun (2003). With their working lives closely connected for many years, Barlow and Clarke are now recognized as two of the most respected citizen leaders in Canada and in the global justice movement generally.

Both have been featured speakers at the World Social Forums in Porto Alegre and Mumbai. They have also been important innovators in cross-border organising, shown in their work against the MAI and WTO; in creating democratic models of organising, shown by the Council of Canadians, and in bringing new issues to the forefront of the movement, as with NAFTA, the MAI and water; and in developing credible alternatives, which are discussed in their co-authored book Global Showdown: How the New Activists are Fighting Global Corporate Rule(2001).

They have also worked closely together through the International Forum on Globalisation (IFG) which was set up in 1998. A major common focus of their work in recent years has been the world’s water resources.

In 2002 they published “Blue Gold: The Battle Against Corporate Theft of the World’s Water”, which has been published in 47 countries.

They together built up a considerable network of activists in the Global South, and an important part of their work has been to visit and assist communities struggling for water rights, e.g. the village of Plachimada in Kerala fighting against a Coca-Cola plant.

One particular victory for the international water movement was the inclusion by referendum into the constitution of Uruguay a new article ensuring not only that access to piped water and sanitation is a fundamental human right available to everyone, but also that in the creation of water policies social and ecological considerations should take precedence over economic considerations.

Another huge victory (July, 2010) was when the United Nations General Assembly adopted the resolution recognising the human right to water and sanitation as “essential for the full enjoyment of the right to life.” Two months later, the UN Human Rights Council adopted a second resolution, adding that the human right to water and sanitation are derived from the right to an adequate standard of living as well as the right to life and human dignity.

 
 

Publications

  • Mai: The Multilateral Agreement on Investment and the Threat to Canadian Sovereignty. Maude Barlow, Tony Clarke. Apex Print 1997.
  • The Fight of My Life: Confessions of an Unrepentant Canadian. Harper Collins 1998.
  • Global Showdown: How the New Activists are Fighting Global Corporate Rule. Maude Barlow, Tony Clarke. Stoddart Publishing 2001.
  • Blue Gold: the Battle Against Corporate Theft of the World’s Water. Maude Barlow, Tony Clarke. New Press 2002.
  • Profit Is Not the Cure: A Citizen’s Guide to Saving Medicare. McClelland & Stewart, Toronto 2003.
  • Too Close For Comfort: Canada’s Future Within Fortress North America.McClelland & Stewart, Toronto 2005.
  • Blue Covenant. The Global Water Crisis and the Coming Battle for the Right to Water. McClelland & Stewart, Toronto 2007.
  • Water is a Woman’s Right. Common Ground, March 2007. Download(pdf)
  • The Right to Water. The Campaign for a United Nations Treaty.
  • Die Wasser-Allmende. Eine gute Zukunft braucht gutes Wasser für alle.Maude Barlow. Drachen-Verlag, 2013.
  • Blue Future: Protecting Water for People and the Planet Forever. Maude Barlow. New Press, Fall 2013.
  • Liquid Pipeline: Extreme energy’s threat to the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway. The Council of Canadians, March 2014. Download(pdf)
  • Boiling Point: Government Neglect, Corporate Abuse, and Canada’s Water Crisis. Maude Barlow. ECW Press, Fall 2016.

Links