Thousands of Island Lake residents still haul their drinking water in pails from a community tap and rely on outhouses or latrine buckets that some dump on the ground close to home. What will it take for these Manitobans to secure what the United Nations recognizes as an essential human right to safe water and sanitation?

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  • Boiling mad

    HOLLOW WATER FIRST NATION -- Water detective Clarence Peebles is on the case. Every time the water plant operator sees a suspicious puddle -- day or night, his weary wife confirms -- he leaps out of his truck and scoops up some water.

  • Water service survey

    Engineers have fanned out across Canada to evaluate the state of water and wastewater services on almost every one of the country's 610 First Nations.

  • Billions spent

    NO one can accuse the Canadian government of ignoring water and waste-water systems on First Nations over the last 15 years.

  • Safe water a human right: Canadians

    ALMOST all Canadians believe clean water should be guaranteed as a human right, according to a poll to be released in Winnipeg this month by the Trudeau Foundation and the University of Manitoba.

  • Sewer superhero

    FISHER RIVER -- At midnight on a bitter Manitoba winter night when the sewage plant on a remote First Nation breaks down, who you gonna call?

  • Stuck with the flow

    RESEARCHERS are collecting samples of drinking water from a dozen randomly chosen Manitoba First Nations to test for traces of metals, such as mercury, that can slowly poison.

  • 'A slap in the face'

    Indian and Northern Affairs Minister John Duncan promises to let First Nations help rewrite a proposed drinking-water law that outraged aboriginal leaders and the Liberal Opposition when it was introduced in the Senate in May.

  • Problem solver

    ST. THERESA POINT — Oscar McDougall is proof that education can solve as many problems as cash.

  • Years of warnings

    The Canadian government has been warned repeatedly about the water crisis on First Nations reserves in a long string of alarming reports:

  • Green alternative or inferior service?

    Should First Nations with homes spread far apart turn to alternative technologies such as composting toilets and single-home filters?

  • Keep on truckin'

    Underground water pipes, bitterly cold winters and the rocky Canadian Shield don't mix well.