While I agree that “access to sanitation and water are fundamental human rights” the assertion that “a lack of these services is putting hundreds of millions of children, girls and women at risk each and every day.” where the risks refer not to health and hygiene but rather risk to personal safety and freedom from violence, takes attention away from basic equality and humanity.
Yes a woman should have a clean place to go and yes for the sake of public health this should not be out in the open, but even if a woman goes to the toilet in the open she should not fear for her safety.
Obviously we don’t expect Bill and Melinda Gates to look into issues of caste, gender and land tenure when they’ve got a huge toilet program going on. Good for them. But let theirs not be the last Word on the matter.
In response to
Attacks on girls and women as they look for somewhere private to defecate are frighteningly common. Improving basic sanitation, as a global goal, would do a lot to make them safer.