Lack of washroom facilities for women has come out as a major complaint in an online survey conducted by the city police. Close to 40% of women respondents in the ongoing survey for women’s safety, pointed out the difficulty of accessing clean sanitation facilities at workplaces, mostly in government offices and buildings, bus stations, railway stations and at other public places.
The survey has had 40,000 responses till date and is gaining further momentum, police sources said. Initially, many respondents raised issues such as harassment at home and at the workplace. However, many more have now highlighted the lack of women’s toilets at work places.
We have discussed this in our meetings. Once the survey is over, we will get in touch with authorities to resolve the issue of lack of proper sanitation facilities. said a senior official. Anita,a government employee who works as a clerk, said she had a long-standing concern over the lack of clean toilets for women in her office. Police sources said that she mentioned in the survey that while there is a toilet for women in her office, it remains dirty and the foul smell makes it impossible to enter it.
Another respondent, Manisha, mentioned that apart from Sulabh Souchalay, there are few toilets for women at public places.She stated that some time back while she was travelling to her native place by bus, she felt an urgent need to attend nature’s call. The toilet that was there did not have a commode. She has a knee problem and cannot use it, said the official.
The issue becomes more severe for disabled people like Yogita. She is a specially abled person and faces serious difficulty due to lack of facilities for such persons. She mentioned that there is an acute need to set up toilets for specially abled persons, the police source said.
Several women also complained about harassment at work places and at home. Some women, who live on the city outskirts, said they are afraid to go to some areas of the walled city.
City police said the online survey will continue till 1 lakh responses come in from women about problems they face. We will form a committee which will get in touch with departments concerned to try and resolve the issues. The survey is being conducted for women’s welfare. One heartening part is that till now very few women have complained about eve-teasing in public places, said the police official.