National Consultative Workshop for Person with Disabilities-Led Organisations on Wash as a development Priority
WaterAid organized a National Consultative Workshop for Persons with Disablities-led Organisations where the participants lamented the lack of WASH services in public areas (in public and private sector spaces) and demanded that government should address these concerns through the implementation and enforcement of laws and regulations. They put forth concern on the lack of accurate data on the status of WASH services for persons with disabilities (PWDs).
Speaking in the panel discussion, Ms Zahida Hameed Qureshi said that, “Lack of access to clean water has caused cases of cerebral palsy to increase to a concerning level in some parts of the country”.
Mr. Khalid Naeem, Ex Director General, Special Education Division was of the opinion that we should use social media more effectively to increase the coverage of information about the WASH needs of population in general and PWDs in particular.
Mr Umar Farooq of Christian Blind Mission highlighted that climate change events doubly impact persons with disabilities because of challenges in mobility, among other issues.
Ms Ghina Mehr of NOWPDP stressed the importance of WASH services as it is a matter of human dignity. In her experience, lack of menstrual health management facilities directly impacts female participation in schools and workplaces, and in the case of PWDs the impact becomes multifold.
“There is need for the government, civil society and businesses to work collectively to bring access to WASH services to Persons with Disabilities”, said Mr. Arif Jabbar Khan, Country Director WaterAid.
The participants agreed on solidarity among the organisations working with and for PWD to make WASH a development priority in their work going froward. The event ended with policy and practice-related recommendations and a plan for future collaboration for ensuring access to WASH services for all in public and private spaces.