The UN-hosted Sanitation and Water for All global partnership (SWA) released a new handbook which will support parliamentarians in advancing the human rights to water and sanitation and promote the achievement of UN Sustainable Development Goal 6 worldwide.
Some 2.2 billion people around the world lack access to safely managed drinking water services. Additionally, 4.2 billion people lack access to managed sanitation services, and 3 billion lack basic handwashing facilities. Many people affected by lack of access to water, sanitation and hygiene services live in vulnerable or marginalized communities.
The handbook provides suggestions for parliamentarians on using representation, legislation, accountability, and budget oversight
Strong and accountable parliaments are needed more than ever, the handbook notes, as climate change, and its impact on access to water and other resources, will place unprecedented pressure on water and sanitation services in the coming years. Half of the world’s population could be living in areas facing water scarcity by as early as 2025.
The handbook provides suggestions for parliamentarians on using representation, legislation, accountability, and budget oversight to shape water and sanitation policies which reduce inequalities and uphold human rights.
“The lack of access to basic services across the globe underscores the urgent need to enshrine the human rights to water and sanitation in policy and legislation,” said Catarina de Albuquerque, SWA’s CEO. “Parliaments and parliamentarians play a critical role in prioritizing vital infrastructure, allocating sufficient budgetary resources and identifying and outlawing discriminatory practices that prevent people from accessing water and sanitation.”