No one left behind Good practices in ensuring equitable access to water and sanitation Approaching the equitable access challenge Why worry about equitable access? Advances towards universal access to water and sanitation are being made at the expense of putting at the end of the access queue the difficult to reach This is not just unfair, it will also undermine reaching the universal access goals Access to water and sanitation in the panEuropean region is unequal We still have an access problem 110 million Europeans do not have access Large in-country differences are not random -- they affect
mostly the poor and rural populations. Richer countries also have an equitable access problem Population group Access in Tajikistan Richest 20% More than 75% Poorest 40% Less than 10% EEA, 2007 The rate of access to water and sanitation by rural populations in the EECCA sub-region is 10 percentage points lower than that of urban populations WHO-UNICEF, 2010
There are international obligations to end inequities in access The General Assembly,  Acknowledging the importance of equitable access to safe and clean drinking water  Recognizes the right to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation as a human right that is essential for the full enjoyment of life and all human rights UN General Assembly resolution 64/292 Equitable access to water, adequate in terms of both quantity and quality should be provided for all members of the population, especially those who suffer a disadvantage or social exclusion Protocol on Water and Health, Article
5 (I) And opportunities to call for support Governments in developing and transition countries are making efforts 0.48% of GDP They can call on other countries to help them reach universal access International support amounts to USD 7 billion, but could be better targeted to address inequities in access User-to-user solidarity France, the Netherlands and Switzerland have developed experiences to fund international cooperation on water with a share of the revenues from water services since 2005 French providers can use 1% of their revenues to that end, with a potential to mobilize EUR 120 million
per year Inequities in access need to be fought in at least 3 fronts Dimension Inequities in access to water and sanitation Geographical disparities: water resources, WSS infrastructure Social disparities: vulnerable and marginalised groups Certain areas of a country (rural areas, poor urban neighborhoods) have no physical access or have access of lower quality than other areas Within areas with good access, certain groups do not have access because they dont have private facilities, the public and institutional facilities they rely on are not adequate, or suffer unintended or intended discrimination
Economic Within areas with good access, the water and disparities: sanitation bill represents too large a share of affordability issues disposable income for some households Steering governance frameworks to ensure equitable access Policy options Good water governance and management Equitable access lens to speed up progress
country situation analysis (indicator-based) action plan (results-oriented) transparency and access to information inclusive participation efficiency incentives for operators accountability and redress mechanisms Good practices Action Areas Examples in the pan-European Region Introducing strategic planning The Portuguese Strategic Plan for Water and Sanitation, which includes coverage targets, investments required and tariff policies, has helped to focus the efforts o all stakeholders on priority actions Improving consultation
mechanisms The French National Water Committees working group on water access issues has led a review resulting in a new law the secures measures to support households that cannot pay their water debts Empowering consumers The Consumer Council for England and Wales uses consumer research and direct customer feedback to inform water policy making and implementation such as on affordability issues Involving NGOs In Poltava oblast (Ukraine) public awareness was a key component of the policy response to acute nitrate poisoning, with civil society organizations such as MAMA-86 playing a key role Involving service providers In the Netherlands, drinking water companies are obliged by law to
make an offer to anyone requesting access, to provide connections and to develop policies to avoid disconnection of small consumers Checklist Reflect international commitments in national legislation Allocate responsibilities and financial resources Set equitable access targets Promote the adoption of an equitable access lens among policymakers and operators through capacity development Invest efforts in better understanding the linkages between equitable access to different public services Develop programmes to raise awareness among users of their rights and the mechanisms to enforce them Analyze and publish the progress in closing equity gaps Develop accountability mechanisms to identify violations and seek redress Create national or local spaces for discussion and coordination between competent authorities Ensure that institutional mechanisms monitor and enforce coverage, quality and cost targets and standards Reducing geographical disparities The challenge 1. 2.
3. 4. 5. Underlying cost structures Specific technical demands Political influence in funding decisions Weak regulation Also a regional policy issue Policy options Closing access gaps Political attention to the rural gap Incentive framework for technical solutions Integrated approaches to service delivery Funding policy for investments in laggards
Closing price gaps Targeted national subsidy policy Cross-subsidization schemes Reform the organization of the sector Information tools Good practices Action Areas Examples in the pan-European Region Developing capacities in rural areas FYR Macedonia is starting to address differences in water quality by increasing awareness and adopting a expanded and differentiated
approach to water quality monitoring in rural areas Investing in appropriate solutions Ukraines new rural water supply concept allocates EUR 290 million over 10 years for providing services to rural communities while widening the options such as decentralized small scale systems Targeting subsidies Hungary, where decentralization of price setting let to wide price disparities between municipalities, targets its subsidy system to areas that face high cost of service Enabling cross- Spains Aragon region has set up a concession and fee scheme for subsidies wastewater treatment where all users pay the same per m3 treated, thus resulting in cross-subsidization from urban to rural residents Introducing information tools
The Portuguese regulator ERSAR has developed a set of indicators to benchmark the performance of sector providers, including affordability , and is developing tariff guidelines Ensuring access for vulnerable and marginalized groups The challenge 1. 2. 3. 4. Diversity of needs, diversity of solutions To a large extent a social exclusion issue Difficulties in finding resources Difficulties in articulating integrated responses Different groups face different barriers to enjoy equitable access Examples of vulnerable and marginalised groups Persons with disabilities, persons with serious and chronic illnesses
School children, hospitalized patients, detainees, refugees Homeless people, nomadic and travelling communities Illegal settlers, illegal immigrants Examples of barriers for enjoying access Standard (private and public) water and sanitation facilities may not be adequate to their special physical needs Institutions on which they relay (schools, hospitals, prisons, refugee camps) may not have adequate water and sanitation facilities Public facilities (fountains, showers, toilets) on which they rely may not be available Water and sanitation service providers may not serve undocumented persons or housing facilities located in untenured land Indigenous people, persons Water providers and social services agencies may incur belonging to ethnic or other in unintended or intended discriminatory practices minorities (service provision, allocation of aid, participation)
Policy options Crosscutting policy options Ensuring non-discrimination Budgeting to address the needs of VMGs Collecting data on VMGs to set priorities Participation of VMGs in decision-making Targeted policy options
Persons with special physical needs Users of institutional facilities Persons without fixed dwellings Persons living in non-sanitary housing Targeted policy options Action areas Examples of policy options Persons with special physical needs Establish standards on accessible facilities Ensure that information on public facilities is understandable by people with common disabilities Users of institutional facilities Persons without fixed dwellings
Enhance inter-institutional coordination Allocate budgetary resources Introduce relevant provisions in facility management contracts. Establish complaints mechanisms. Define responsibilities towards those users Provide public water and sanitation facilities and inform about them Develop specific hygiene promotion initiatives Persons living in non-sanitary housing Develop integrated programmes to address the symptoms and causes including legal issues, urban planning, alternative technologies or innovative business models Good practices Action areas Examples of policy options Review WSS laws, regulations, policies and Persons with The French city of Paris provides 350 public toilets adapted to the operating
procedures to ensure they do not special physical needs of disabled people, as part of that a EUR 16 million/year needs programme of free access public waterthe and sanitation facilities discriminate and that theytoaddress specific needs of VMGs Users of FYR Macedonia has allocated EUR 52 million to improve the institutional
unhygienic conditionsto of ensure prisons and that the Institute of address Public Health Review WSS budgets they facilities regularly monitors the quality of drinking water in prisons the needs of VMGs Persons Belgiums Flanders region has established four transit areas for Collect data oncommunities access with to WSS bysanitation VMGsfacilities to identify
without fixed travelling water and -- each dwellings one can receive 10-25 families for a period of aassistance few days gaps and set priorities for government Persons living The Serbian city Belgradefor has reduced the number of unhygienic Establish requirements WSS institutions to
in non-sanitary Roma settlements combining investments in improved living ensure theconditions representatives of services VMGs effectively housing with access to social participate and can influence decision-making Keeping water and sanitation affordable for all The challenge 1. Affordability is a growing concern for all countries 2. Need to combine changes in tariff design with other measures 3. Funding subsidized access and consumption 4. Need for social policy infrastructure Water can be unaffordable for the poor
Water and sanitation bill (15m3/month) as share of disposable income 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 Average household Lowest decile of population Greece France Denmark Hungary Poland OECD, 2010 Policy options Tariff measures
Progressive tariff systems (IBTs) Cross-subsidizing connections Cross-subsidizing fixed costs Preferential tariffs (income, family size) Non-tariff measures Preventive measures Curative measures Disconnection bans Broader assistance programmes Good practices
Action areas Examples in the pan-European region Crosssubsidies for connection The Portuguese regulator ERSAR has recommended service providers to eliminate the connection charge for wastewater treatment and compensate it by gradually increasing the fixed part of the tariff Social tariffs The Polish operator AQUA SA introduced a reduced tariff for lowincome households (at a cost of 1% of utility revenue) piggy-backing on the eligibility criteria used by the municipal social services Preventive measures The French city of Paris has set 3% of household income as affordability threshold and it allocates part of the city budget to fund water allowances that benefited 44,000 households in 2010 Curative measures
Belgiums Wallonia region has generalized by law the creation of water social funds to help households pay their water debts 11,000 families benefit from this support Broader support programmes Ukraine has targeted housing subsidies to low income households it provides support for families without communal services debt whose housing-related expenses exceed 15% of their income
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