Traditional coverage of access to basic amenities like water and sanitation has inadvertently excluded the needs of the disabled.
Creating user-friendly water and sanitation services for the disabled: the experience of WaterAid Nepal and its partners, a discussion paper by WaterAid Nepal outlines the problems faced by the disabled in the country in accessing water and sanitation services.
The importance of disabled-friendly latrines for dignity and social inclusion is illustrated by this story from the WaterAid study:
“Hari Bahadur Sapkota [left, photo Anita Pradhan, WaterAid Nepal], a resident of Maalika VDC, Banglung, Nepal, is 52. He has been physically impaired by paralysis in both his legs. He had been married three times but all his wives abandoned him. He told us that one of the main reasons his wives left him was that they could not share his plate for meals as he used to crawl and rest his hand on the latrine while defecating. As a result his wives considered him to be unclean. With no visible solution, they left him. However, with the installation of a commode in this latrine, which allows him to sit more comfortably while defecating, as well as keeping his hands away from the pan, Mr Sapkota is no longer considered dirty. In fact, due to his increased hygiene practices, he has been entrusted with the responsibility of cooking for his entire family, while other members earn an income”.