PHRGE Marks “Imagine a Day Without Water” with Report on Ways to Assist Renters


10.20.22 — Northeastern Law’s Program on Human Rights and the Global Economy has released the latest publication in its series on water and human rights in the US, “How Five Creative Water Utilities Are Assisting “Hard-to-Reach” Renters as Water Rates Rise.” The briefing paper examines innovative water assistance programs that reach renters and its release coincides with Imagine a Day Without Water,  a national day of action that brings together diverse stakeholders to highlight how water is essential, invaluable and in need of investment.

“Renters have long been excluded from many assistance programs aimed to help low-income consumers with rising water costs, even though they pay for water either directly or indirectly,” said Professor Martha Davis, PHRGE’s faculty director. “This briefing paper highlights five water utilities that have recognized the equity and human rights issues created by renters’ exclusion, and have taken creative steps to ensure that renters get the assistance that they need. We hope that the information in this briefing paper will encourage other water utilities to likewise think outside of the box.”

This is PHRGE’s seventh publication in a series on the human right to water. The other publications are: (1) “The Human Right to Water: A Research Guide and Annotated Bibliography”; (2) ”The Human Right to Water: Using Freedom of Information Laws to Understand Rising Water Rates;” (3) “The Human Right to Water: A Primer for Lawyers and Community Leaders;” (4) “A Drop in the Bucket: Water Affordability Policies in Twelve Massachusetts Communities;” (5)  “Disconnected: How Household Water Shutoffs in the United States During the COVID Pandemic Violate the Human Right to Water;” and (6)  “Voluntary Local Reviews and the Human Right to Water.”

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The nation’s leader in experiential legal education since 1968, Northeastern University School of Law offers the longest-running, most extensive experience-based legal education program in the country. Northeastern guarantees its students unparalleled practical legal work experiences through its signature Cooperative Legal Education Program. More than 1,000 employers worldwide in a wide range of legal, government, nonprofit and business organizations participate in the program. With a focus on social justice and innovation, Northeastern University School of Law blends theory and practice, providing students with a unique set of skills and experiences to successfully practice law.

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