UN-Habitat Lebanon Unions of Municipalities' COVID-19 Rapid Assessment Report
31 May 2020
Even prior to the outbreak of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, Lebanon already struggled with serious socioeconomic, spatial and environmental challenges related to rapid urbanization and a weakly regulated governmental framework. The pre-existing situation of poor housing, overcrowded neighbourhoods, substandard basic services including water, electricity, solid waste management and disposal, high pollution and inefficient transport have only been exacerbated by the COVID-19 crisis. The majority of vulnerable Lebanese and refugee communities live in poor dense urban neighbourhoods and experience similar challenges as repeatedly highlighted across the world for populations living in slum-like conditions – a severe challenge to observe universal precautionary measures, including physical distancing and extensive water, sanitation and hygiene (WaSH) measures.