The escalation of violence in Gaza and Israel is leaving people in Gaza in urgent need of humanitarian support. Please donate now.

Available documents

No available documents

Oxfam Policy & Practice provides free access to Gender & Development and Development in Practice journal articles.

Download from publisher


This paper speaks of the women sanitation workers who are working at the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic in Pune city, an epicentre of rising COVID-19 cases in India. Prevailing caste and gendered norms of labour roles render the women doubly vulnerable. Within that context, we investigate how the women sanitation workers self-identify their health risks and needs. We document their internal negotiation of health risks, and their narratives pertaining to chronic health issues and deteriorating mental health arising from COVID-19-related uncertainty. We also probe on how their family roles and obligations intersect with their de-prioritisation of self-care. The investigation reveals narratives of lack of agency at work, invisibilised and endemic mental wellness issues, and neglect of personal well-being at the cost of centring the needs of the family.

Additional details





How to cite this resource

Citation styles vary so we recommend you check what is appropriate for your context.  You may choose to cite Oxfam resources as follows:

Author(s)/Editor(s). (Year of publication). Title and sub-title. Place of publication: name of publisher. DOI (where available). URL

Our FAQs page has some examples of this approach.

Related resources

Here are similar items you might be interested in.

Browse all resources