Safe sanitation for all also a challenge for Europe
Not only countries in Asia and Africa are facing a lack of safe sanitation, also in Europe not every house has its private toilet. This appears from a report on the actual status of sanitation around the world of the international charity Wateraid presented at World Toilet Day (19 November). Especially the Russian Federation and countries in Eastern Europe have to do better.
Only 17 countries in the world – including Australia, Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Saudi Arabia have reported that just about every single household in the country has a safe, private toilet. Surprisingly, in Europe developed countries like the UK, Ireland and Sweden are not among them. The number of people who struggle even to access decent shared toilets are not included in the statistics. It concerns those sleeping on the streets of big cities, or in camps for refugees and migrants, official and makeshift, which have sprung up across Europe to house people fleeing poverty or conflict.
Action is needed
The recently adopted Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations call for access to water, sanitation and hygiene for everyone everywhere, and for elimination of inequalities. Goal 6 promises adequate, equitable access to water, sanitation and hygiene to everyone everywhere by 2030. In developed countries where these services are not delivered, it’s a question of political priority. The WaterAid report shows where we action is needed.