Ensure safe water, sanitation for tea workers: speakers
Sanitation campaigns will be futile if tea workers are left behind, said speakers at a workshop yesterday.
The Institute of Development Affairs (IDEA), and Water Aid Bangladesh organised the event at Moulvibazar.
Speakers highlighted the activities of IDEA's ongoing WASH programme in three tea gardens of Sreemangal upazila at the seminar.
"Tea workers still lag behind in sanitation. IDEA is working in only 3 tea gardens; there are 92 tea gardens in Moulvibazar. We cannot develop without leaving anyone behind. We will try to ensure hundred percent sanitation and water supply in every tea garden," said Moulvibazar Deputy Commissioner Mir Nahid Ahsan.
The workshop was moderated by Pankaj Ghosh Dostider, the project manager of IDEA.
A concept paper titled "Safe Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Tea Gardens: Current Status and Actions" was presented by Ranjan Kumar Ghosh, advocacy specialist of Water Aid.
He said many tea workers still defecate in the open. The latrine facilities in their households are considered unclean while female workers' menstrual health is poor.
Moni Bunerjee, a tea worker's daughter, said many still use old clothes to maintain menstrual health due to financial constraints. "So, there is always sickness," she added.
Nazim Mahmud, assistant director of IDEA, gave the welcome address at the event.