A year ago in March is when the federal government said when they were going to end boil water advisories in First Nation communities.

Though they have made some headway and ended many advisories they weren’t successful on their promise.

Kenora MP, Eric Melillo says that out of the 20 First Nation communities affected in Ontario over half are in his riding.

“They are asking for a basic human right that is afforded to everyone else in this country. It is time that the government keeps its promise and it’s time that all of us work in this chamber to end all long-term drinking water advisories on reserves,” said Melillo.

Ending advisories by March of 2021 was a promise made by Prime Minster, Justin Trudeau back in 2015 when the Liberals took power.

As of March 21, 2022, the federal government has ended 131 long-term drinking water advisories since November 2015.

34 advisories are still in place that effect 29 communities across the country, 14 being in Northwestern Ontario.

There are three advisories scattered across Manitoba, and four across Saskatchewan.

The most recent community to lift their advisory in the region was Wabseemoong Independent Nation back on December 9, 2021, which was in effect since August of 2017.

The Nation completed upgrades and repairs to their water treatment plant and distribution system. Performance testing was completed successfully and the system is producing water-meeting applicable requirements.

Newly appointed Indigenous Services Minister, Patty Hadju said in 2021 she is considering a new timeline on when to lift the remaining long-term drinking water advisories.

Since taking over the role from the previous minister, Marc Miller, Hadju has been able to lift 9 advisories.

In the 2021 federal budget $1.04 billion over the next two years that was earmarked for the First Nations Water and Wastewater Enhanced Program. This investment will support the planning, procurement, construction, and commissioning of both minor and major water and wastewater capital projects.

As of September 30, 2021, $2.16 billion of targeted funds has been invested to support water and wastewater-related infrastructure projects.

Below is the list of First Nation communities currently dealing with a long-term boil water advisory in NWO:

  • Northwest Angle No.33 since April 11, 2011
  • Anishnaabeg of Naongashiing since February 15, 2019

  • Mishkeegogamang Ojibway First Nation since September 8, 2020

  • Martin Falls First Nation since July 18, 2005

  • Eabametoong First Nation since August 1, 2001

  • Neskantaga First Nation since February 1, 1995

  • Nibinamik First Nation since February 15, 2013

  • Wawakapewin First Nation since March 3, 2004

  • Bearskin Lake First Nation since March 21, 2006

  • Sachigo Lake First Nation since October 10, 2018

  • North Caribou Lake First Nation since March 3, 2020

  • Sandy Lake First Nation since October 10, 2002

  • North Spirit Lake First Nation since April 5, 2019

  • Deer Lake First Nation since October 15, 2019