Sanitation: A Human Rights Imperative

The Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions (COHRE)

This booklet addresses the:

 Benefit of treating sanitation in human rights terms,
 Legal basis of the right to sanitation,
 State obligations and standards for differing environments, and
 Priority actions for governments and other stakeholders.

While there has been some progress on the recognition and implementation of the right to water, the same is not true of sanitation services. The current International Year of Sanitation presents an opportunity to address the lack of attention paid to sanitation and hygiene in human rights terms.

This publication is a call to recognise sanitation as a crucial aspect of the right to an adequate standard of living, setting out the most important strategies and measures that stakeholders and decision-makers can prioritise in order to ensure that sanitation is accessible and affordable to all. It is an advocacy tool to encourage more funding for sanitation, more debate and more research into the barriers to accessing affordable sanitation and how to remove them. Read more