Many economically disadvantaged women do not have access to clean water and sanitation – World Bank

The World Bank says the vast majority of Sri Lankan women facing social and economic hardship are at risk of losing access to clean water and sanitation. The World Bank also says that the majority of adolescent girls in Sri Lanka face difficulties due to inadequate menstrual hygiene facilities on school premises.

The World Bank’s Water Supply and Sanitation Improvement Project (WASSIP) report has revealed this information.

According to the report, although 90% of Sri Lanka’s population has access to water for consumption, only 43% of the people in the plantation areas have access to clean water. The World Bank points out that the majority of women in the plantation sector are directly affected by this water crisis and there are unfortunate special occasions when some women in the mountains travel daily by bus as well as three-wheelers to fetch water.

The World Bank report also shows that the majority of women in plantation areas in Sri Lanka face hygiene and safety issues during menstruation due to the lack of toilet facilities. Overall, 50% of adolescent girls in schools islandwide do not attend school during menstruation.

The remarkable thing about this report is that 60% of teachers in Sri Lanka have a misunderstanding of the menstrual process. Therefore, the report says that the teachers are taking steps to discourage students from attending school during the menstrual period.