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Climbing the sanitation ladder is a gradual process hindered by many factors including technological, human psychological and environmental issues.

Having the right sanitation technology for a given context is a basic requirement for a lasting facility and a lasting good sanitation practice.  Any latrine or toilet must be a wanted latrine or toilet.  

As households have to pay for it themselves - usually latrines/toilets are not being subsidised - good information on various options should be made available to the households, the local private sector and communities.

People in any community, rural or urban, rich or poor, have varying demands and wishes also regarding a latrine or toilet.  Sanimarts, local builders should be aware of these wishes and able to respond.  Cultural - including taboos, beliefs and witchcraft-, religious and social aspects, availability of water, potential or demands to use decomposed and safe human waste for productive use in agriculture are some factors influencing the sanitation technology preference of a family.  

Cost of the facility or its affordability and willingness to spend that amount on it, is a leading factor in technology selection.  Other influencing factors are the soil - rocky, hard, stable or soft and unstable-, the groundwater table and whether the area is prone to flooding.  And ... what to do when the latrine pit or septic tank is filled up?  Are there pit emptying services available and are they affordable to all?  Or would the household and community prefer sanitation options with pits that can be safely emptied by the themselves or a local pit emptier?  

Sanitation options for that choice are available, such as double pit composting latrines, double pit pour-flush latrines, urine-diversion dry toilets.  For those who can afford, septic tanks and even small-bore or full sewerage are more advanced options.  However, the reality is that only some 3% of all Africans and between 5-10% of the Asians is connected to a sewerage system.  That rate will increase but probably not much in the coming decade.


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