Closing the gap between sustainability and affordability: communal sanitation in urban slums of India

2018-10-26T13:58:20Z (GMT) by Lubna Anantakrishnan Puneet Srivastava
This research paper is based on assessment of community toilet blocks in urban slums of Lucknow and Kanpur, UP, India. The objective of the research was to assess the current set of practices and usages from perspective of financial sustainability and affordability of services to urban poor. Economic analysis shows that low-income households are currently paying 3 to 6 times the UN standard for accessing affordable sanitation, and 104 times that of an affluent household with a household latrine. Financial and managerial structures vary across facilities, with observed under-budgeting resulting in poor sanitation access and services. The lessons learnt include developing existing community toilets as WASH Resource Centers through diversification service, major role of women in managing these to ensure gender inclusive model and city or sub city -level cluster based management through a federation of Community toilet blocks, ensuring financial and operational sustainability.