‘Toilet revolution’ benefits the most vulnerable in China, reflects CPC’s focus on people’s well-being: expert
Published: Aug 28, 2022 08:49 PM
Construction workers build public toilets in Ping'an village in Dongyang, East China's Zhejiang Province, on December 19, 2018. Photo: IC

Construction workers build public toilets in Ping'an village in Dongyang, East China's Zhejiang Province, on December 19, 2018. Photo: IC

In recent years, the "toilet revolution" has continued to advance in China, greatly improving the quality of people's life and contributing to the country's development of ecological civilization and rural revitalization.

"The toilet issue is not only related to the improvement of the tourist environment, but also a key barometer of social advancement. More importantly, it reflects the importance the Party attaches to human rights," Lou Xiaoqi, executive president of the Capital Civilizational Development Foundation, a Beijing-based NGO, told the Global Times.

Lou, also the president of magazine Civilization, has promoted a toilet revolution in Beijing since 1993. "China's delicacies are world-renowned, but China's public toilets are notorious" in the 1980s and 1990s, these "buzzwords" about China's toilets were still fresh in Lou's mind.

It has been more than 30 years since China started the "toilet revolution," and Beijing was among the first to initiate the campaign. 

During this period, as China's economy developed rapidly, cities expanded at breakneck speed, and the construction of new countryside advanced by leaps and bounds, but the small problem of adequate sanitation still bothers many domestic residents and foreign visitors. 

The toilet revolution is more a systemic issue concerning the respect for people, the care for vulnerable groups such as women, children and the elderly, and the development of today's civilization, Lou told Global Times.

Nowadays, modern toilets in the country are gradually matching up with the influence and status of China as the second largest economy in the world. 

Odor-free and convenient for the disabled, today's toilets in most Chinese cities are equipped with compartments and provide toilet paper and hand sanitizer. 

As women's toilets are continually being expanded across tourist sites, and mother-and-baby rooms are made more available, and high technologies are more widely adopted, every aspect of progress in toilets reflects the focus of the Communist Party of China (CPC) on the most basic and detailed aspects of people's well-being, Lou said.

"This means that China has reached a relatively advanced stage of socioeconomic development with the ability to protect vulnerable groups, pay attention to the core shortcomings of livelihood issues, and make sure vulnerable groups can enjoy the fruits of modern development and public resources equally," Lou said. "This is the basic logic behind the CPC's commitment to protecting human rights." 

In the future, the efforts of China's rural construction and toilet revolution won't cease but require further innovation. By actively adopting new technologies and materials, China should construct specialized facilities that truly fit in local with conditions in a more scientific way, he noted.