20 September 2011
Giant toilet outside parliament a message on poverty for sitting members
AAP - September 20, 2011 12:11PM
A GIANT toilet has been set up outside Parliament House to draw attention to global poverty and the link between decent sanitation and preventable deaths.
Federal MPs today joined a queue to help raise awareness for the 2.6 billion people around the world waiting to gain access to a toilet.
Students, retirees, teachers, plumbers, aid workers and church leaders took part in the Voices for Justice event as part of the Micah Challenge campaign to ensure global poverty stays firmly on the political agenda.
The link between access to sanitation and global deaths was clear, national coordinator John Beckett said, adding about a quarter of the 8.1 million annual child deaths could be prevented.
“That's two million kids who could be saved,” he said.
Lack of access to a toilet was not only enormously dehumanising, it was literally a matter of life and death.
“No-one should be dying for a dunny,” Mr Beckett said.
The group is calling on the government to increase its aid allocation for water and sanitation to $500 million by 2015.