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When did the UK reach ODF?

related country: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
related country: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Recently, a partner organisation in India asked this question, when the UK reached Open Defecation Free (ODF). Anybody have any coverage statistics for the UK, or a good reference document? How long have we been at 99% (I assume we still are not on 100%).

ps: I asked on yammer before - but still looking for an answer

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Hmmm, tricky one! It depends how you define "ODF". Open Defecation often wasn't the biggest issue: it was people using poor toilets, foe example flush toilets that would go directly in the river. A lot of the history focuses on improved legislation and "landmark" improvements like the extension of sewers in large cities like London or Paris. In rural areas you would find an outhouse / pit toilet quite readily. The statistics I have seen tend to be for particular cities or even settlements. Useful resources: quotes that "in the 1930s, there were still appalling conditions in industrial towns" in the UK. Or more recently, in France there were still many slums in the 1950s that had very poor sanitation. This resource also points some useful data. What can be generally remembered is that, while big changes were triggered in the second half of the 19th century, and while many large improvements happened in big cities then, progress in smaller industrial towns and cities and in rural areas took more time, well into the 20th century...

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Hey, nice. I am missing the "like" button. So, to put it in other words, ODF was reached early in the twentieth century, and since that we have been struggling with FSM (Faecal Sludge Management) :-)

Great WEDC document. Thanks!

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Great answer Remi.

According to the 2008 JMP data, the UK was still at 97% access to seweraged systems. I suspect that this means that 3% have onsite systems or systems that are simply no trecognised, i.e. that the UK is essentially ODF.

As Remi says ODF has probably not been the specific measure used in this country. I suspect that the measures have been more linked to service coverage via sewer systems.

You might also find the following links useful:

PS re the "like" button. This functionality exists, it is just current switched off. Please make this feedback to Cristian.

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2014-03-14 07:44:45 -0500
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Last updated:
Jun 04 '14