What and why?
A safely managed sanitation chain is essential to protecting the health of individuals and communities and the environment. Leaking latrines and raw wastewater can spread disease and provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes, as well as pollute groundwater and surface water that may serve as potential sources of drinking water.
Good hygiene practices such as handwashing with soap and water after using the toilet and before preparing and eating meals, are essential to limiting the spread of communicable diseases.
The aim to pay special attention to the needs of women and girls – also part of target 6.1 – includes increasing access to drinking water and sanitation services in the home. Not having to walk for hours to collect water or care for sick household members frees up women’s time, and not having to share sanitary facilities with other households improves women’s security. Improved access to safe drinking water and sanitation facilities in the public sphere, including for menstrual hygiene management, will also help to enable more women and girls to attend school and work outside the home.