UK BCSD are an an ambassador for the WBCSD WASH Water Pledge.
Billions of people without safe drinking water and adequate sanitation is an unacceptable situation for human, social and economic development, which violates basic requirements of human dignity and safety and has enormous impact on people’s health, education, and capacity to lead fully productive lives.
This is incompatible with WBCSD’s vision 2050 of 9 billion people living well within the limits of the planet, nor with the human right to water and sanitation. A first step in accelerating action from business is to obtain company commitment to ensure appropriate access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene for all employees in all premises under company control. Longer term vision is to go beyond the fence to advocate for access for all employees along the value chain and ultimately employee homes and communities where employees.
By signing this pledge companies commit to: implementing access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene at the workplace at an appropriate level of standard for all employees in all premises under their control within three years after signature.
Investing in safe WASH for employees leads to:
- Healthier and more productive workforce: Adequate access to safe WASH is associated with decreased absenteeism due to water-related diseases, and thus improved productivity.
- Increased brand value: Provision of access to safe WASH to all employees can also lead to tangible benefits, such as improved public perception, and thus increased brand value.
- Lower reputational risks and more secured social license to operate: Perceived mismanagement of water resources or infringement on the Human Right to Water and Sanitation can negatively impact businesses and possibly result in revoking the company’s social license to operate within certain communities. Good water management and provision of safe WASH allows them to lower this risk.
- Expanded and more vibrant markets: Countries with higher percentages of the population with access to safe WASH enjoy higher growth. It is estimated that for every US$ 1 invested in water and sanitation, US$ 4.30 is generated in economic returns through increased productivity.
- Demonstration of leadership in supporting global objectives: Ensuring safe WASH at the workplace contributes to the achievement of internationally recognized objectives such as the universal realization of the Human Right to Water and Sanitation.
For case studies, tools and guidance, visit the WBCSD website
As an ambassador, UK BCSD are asking our member companies to sign up to the pledge. For more information on the benefits for developed countries and what is involved please get in touch.