The second report of the Walkerton, Ontario water crisis inquiry was released on May 23, 2002. The outbreak of E.coli in May 2000 killed seven people and left 2,300 others ill. In his 600-page assessment of government water policy and practices, Associate Chief Justice Dennis O’Connor recommends province-wide water standards, the enactment of a Safe Drinking Water Act and increased staff for the environment ministry.
Judge O’Connor urges the government to immediately invest up to $280-million to implement his 93 recommendations. He also calls on Ontario Premier Ernie Eves to increase annual spending by up to $49-million. More than $500-million has already been spent on the Walkerton water crisis.
Five children have recently suffered from E.coli poisoning in Walkerton, but it’s not yet been confirmed if water is to blame. These latest victims were all looked after by a babysitter at a private home. All are recovering.
For more information, see http://www.attorneygeneral.jus.gov.on.ca/html/CAD/walkertonrpt2.htm