LGBTI and Sanitation: What We Know and What the Gaps Are

February 2018

Discussions on gender and sanitation and hygiene typically ignore non-normative gender identities. To address this, we reviewed the existing literature on the interrelation of LGBTI and sanitation.

The evidence is scanty, and mostly focused on developed countries, although there is a growing body of evidence looking at South and South-East Asia. Most of the publications focus on the challenges transgender people face when accessing public toilets or other communal facilities, which include verbal abuse, physical and sexual assault, denial of access, arrest and expulsion.

Almost nothing was found on LGBI people (not including transgender). Solutions range from ‘gender-neutral’ public toilets, to ‘third gender’ ones, as well as ensuring transgender people can access toilets matching their gender identity. But there is no clear consensus. Overwhelmingly, the review reinforced how little is known about the challenges LGBTI face in relation to sanitation, a gap academics and practitioners alike could help address.

Additional details

PublisherLoughborough University
ThemesGender, Leave no one behind, Sexual and gender minorities
LanguageEnglish

Learn more about SLH Research

We use a range of research approaches, which aim to draw attention to urgent knowledge gaps, blind spots and emerging questions, often at a critical point in time, to support policy-makers, practitioners and partners in navigating and responding swiftly.

SLH Research and Learning