15-16 May 2013
The second meeting of the Expert Group on Monitoring Progress in Achieving Equitable Access to Water and Sanitation in the pan-European region (http://www.unece.org/env/water/2nd_expert_group_eqaccessscorecard.html) under the Protocol on Water and Health (mp.wat.2000.1.e.pdf) to the UNECE Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes (Water Convention) (watercon.pdf) was organised in Paris on 15-16 May 2013 in cooperation with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health of France. As Party to the Protocol since 2005, France is leading and supporting activities on equitable access.
The objectives of the meeting were:
- To draw lessons from the pilot projects on assessing equitable access implemented in France, Portugal and Ukraine (self-evaluation process, findings and follow-up)
- To finalize the score card on equitable access
- To finalize the synthesis report including recommendations on the way to organise the self-assessment process and to use the results
- To discuss the possible next steps and future work on equitable access in the framework of the Protocol on Water and Health.
The meeting was attended by the experts from countries of the UNECE region and from international organizations. Emma Anakhasyan, the Head of the Environmental Health Department of the AWHHE was also invited as an expert from the organization, which could offer an advanced expertise in equitable access in water and sanitation and in the implementation of the Protocol.
The pilot projects implemented in three countries were presented. The three assessments highlighted the lack of statistics available about access to water and sanitation for vulnerable and marginalized groups and of an integrated public policy to address their specific needs. The three countries are now considering the possibility of including more specific targets for equitable access to water and sanitation in their future strategic plans. This will contribute to the mandatory progressive implementation of the human right to water and sanitation.
Participants discussed and provided input on (1) finalizing the score card on equitable access (Draft_Synthesis_Scorecard_Report__10_may_2013_.pdf) and (2) the possible next steps and future work on equitable access in the framework of the Protocol (Proposed_next_steps_and_future_work_EqAccess_WatSan.pdf).