Published in: 2018
Globally, more than a billion people, including up to 10 per cent of all children, are estimated to have a disability. More than 110 million persons with disabilities may be at risk of having poor access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) facilities. Access to WASH provides direct benefits to health, social inclusion and dignity, and is fundamental to achieve human rights and development goals.
Using current evidence and testimony from more than 60 WASH experts and actors, including people with disabilities through disabled persons organizations (DPOs) in 30 countries, this technical paper highlights evidence from current practice and published literature, to argue that accessible and inclusive WASH is achievable at low cost, by using universal design, community-driven change, and existing knowledge, expertise and methods. The benefits of accessible and inclusive WASH can be enjoyed by everyone in the community. Prioritizing accessible and inclusive WASH can be a key strategy to address persistent barriers to improved WASH coverage, and is essential for all WASH stakeholders.
This paper reveals promising starting points to understand the impact of and case for accessible and inclusive WASH. It calls for new emphasis on understanding and measuring impacts, to address the current evidence gaps and to advocate for change towards accessible and inclusive WASH for all.
UNICEF (2018). The Case for Investment in Accessible and Inclusive WASH. UNICEF
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