More people have cellphones than have access to a toilet. About 6 billion people have cellphones and only 4.5 billion have access to a clean toilet, says the U.N.
That means over 2.5 billion people worldwide lack a safe place to use the bathroom. One million have no choice but to go out in the open. Lack of access to a clean, private toilet increases the risk of gender-based violence and can even have deadly consequences.
That’s why the U.N. declared November 19 World Toilet Day. This year’s theme — “We Can’t Wait” — underscores how access to improved sanitation can reduce assaults and other violence against women and girls.
Celebrities like Matt Damon have taken note. In this parody video, Damon pledges not to use a toilet until everyone in the world has access to clean water and sanitation. You can help raise awareness by tweeting your thoughts using #wecantwait.