Uneven access to safe drinking water for First Nations in Canada: connecting health and place through source water protection

Health Place. 2011 Jan;17(1):386-9. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2010.10.005. Epub 2010 Oct 20.


Source water protection has gained considerable attention in the water resources literature particularly after several well publicized (non-First Nations) water contamination events in Canada. This short report explores health and place through an examination of access to safe drinking water in a developed country. For First Nations in Canada, safe drinking water remains a serious, albeit under-reported, problem. The incidence of contaminated drinking water is pervasive in many First Nations communities. Attempts to "fix" water quality problems using technology alone have produced only limited success. It will be shown that greater attention to source water protection has potential for both to improve drinking water quality as well as to re-connect health and place for First Nations in Canada.

MeSH terms

  • British Columbia / epidemiology
  • Canada / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Indians, North American* / statistics & numerical data
  • Water Pollution / prevention & control
  • Water Pollution / statistics & numerical data
  • Water Quality* / standards
  • Water Supply / standards
  • Water Supply / statistics & numerical data*