RESOURCES

Why the water and sanitation sector in East Africa should consider disabled people


Why the water and sanitation sector in East Africa should consider disabled people

  • Current estimates are that approximately 7.3 million people in East Africa are disabled. 
  • Violent conflict, accidents, HIV/AIDS and environmental pollution, all of which are common in East Africa, contribute to an increase in the number of disabled people. 
  • Disabled people have the same needs and rights as everyone else, including access to adequate living conditions, sanitation facilities and safe water, education and health services. 
  • The majority of disabled people in low income communities will only access these basic needs and rights, and so achieve an acceptable quality of life, by being included in mainstream services and programmes. 
  • Lack of clean water and sanitation facilities are key factors in keeping people poor, unhealthy and unable to improve their livelihoods. For disabled people, the impact is far greater. 
  • Areas with least access to water and sanitation also tend to have a higher percentage of disadvantaged populations, including disabled people. 
  • Disabled people are routinely excluded from water and sanitation projects in low-income communities, because project designs do not consider their needs.