Anna R. Welch

Class Year


Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

Winter 2005


The South African Constitution, founded on a number of values including “human dignity, the achievement of equality and the advancement of human rights and freedoms,” recognizes a vast array of social, economic, and cultural rights, including the right to have access to “sufficient water.” In ensuring this right, the government must take “reasonable legislative and other measures, within its available resources, to achieve the progressive realisation of each of these rights.” The Constitution places general limitations on the Bill of Rights under Section 36(1) only to the extent that “the limitation is reasonable and justifiable in an open and democratic society based on human dignity, equality and freedom.” Inadequate resources in South Africa may also limit enforcement of socio-economic rights.