Toilets save lives, people without them deserve our help

Nov 21, 2018 in Activist Publications

World Toilet Day was Nov. 19. The United Nations feels that proper sanitation is such an important issue it has dedicated a day to the subject. We get up in the morning and most of us do not give a thought to the fact we have a toilet. We use it, then we flush it with water that is so precious in other parts of the world. About one-third of the world’s population does not have such a luxury. Women and children slip away into the bush at daybreak and at night. Sometimes this is a hazardous challenge, as they risk being assaulted. This lack of sanitation kills almost 1,000 children per day. Millions are stuck in crowded refugee camps with inadequate sanitation, such as the oppressed Rohingya people originally from Myanmar (Burma). The UN has commented: “toilets save lives because human waste spreads killer diseases.” Can we ignore this? I do not think so. People without proper sanitation are our long-distance neighbours, and until we all live with dignity we have work to do. If that is not reason enough, it is from such unsanitary conditions that the next pandemic could arise. I encourage our government to support people with a need for better sanitation.

Publication: The Hill Times
Type: Letter to the editor
Author: Ivor Green
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