“On the question of water, it’s not just a matter of missed economic opportunities, of entrenched social injustice and poverty; on the question of water, it’s quite simply a matter of life and death”, Michael Moller

The 1st World Summit on Leaving No One Behind was launched in appropriate style with opening speeches from Michael Moller (Director General of the United Nations) and Francis Gurry (Secretary General of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO)) on Thursday 7th February. Gurry highlighted the need to build on existing low cost and tested technologies and introduced the role that WIPO can play in making these available.

Kate Gilmore, Deputy High Commisioner for Human Rights

Kate Gilmore (Deputy High Commissioner of the Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights) closed the final session on the Friday, with her reflections on the fundamental dignity related to water and sanitation and the link to goal 6 and the

“need to inject urgency and justice into a more inclusive process to realise human rights to water and sanitation”, Kate Gilmore

The calibre of the speakers reflects the importance of the subject, the need to find solutions for the very poor, the marginalised, and the people left behind. In order to realise the Sustainable Development Goals Agenda 2030 on water there needs to be a more concerted effort by everyone to achieve these goals stated Director General of WaterLex, Amanda Loeffen. This Summit is the first event of 2019 on the topic of Leaving No One Behind, and the start of the UN-Water Campaign:

“whoever you are, wherever you are, water is your human right”. 

Leaving No One Behind

Sustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG 6) on water to “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all” highlights the overarching principle of “Leaving No One Behind”. In committing to the realisation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Member States recognised that the dignity of the individual is fundamental, and that the Agenda’s Goals and targets should be met for all nations and people and for all segments of society. Furthermore, they endeavour to reach first those who are furthest behind.

This 1st World Water Summit on Leaving No One Behind aims to fill a need that is not yet met by other water conferences and provides a kick-off event as part of the 2019 UN-Water campaign on this theme. It differentiates itself from other water conferences by the focus on human rights to water and sanitation, and the focus on finding and implementing workable solutions with support from sponsors.  The event is envisaged to be held annually for the next 11 years, for the duration of the SDG Agenda, and form part of the wider campaign to achieve SDG 6.  The outcomes from these events will be interlinked with other global water events, such as the High-Level Panel on Water (HLPW), the World Water Forum (WWF) and World Water Week (WWW), and form part of the UN-Water annual campaigns.

The 1st World Summit on Leaving No One Behind is organised and sponsored by