restricted access Water Insecurity among the Urban Poor in the Peri-urban Zone of Xochimilco, Mexico City

This paper examines access to water among the urban poor in illegal settlements in a peripheral area of Mexico City, where supply is characterized by insecurity and exclusion, and where the water needs of the population are commonly met by an array of non-conventional and officially non-recognized informal operators. The analysis focuses on a southern zone of the urban periphery, the District of Xochimilco, where data were collected and questionnaires applied in three informal settlements. Analysis shows that while both illegal and formal settlements lack good quality infrastructure and a constant water supply, it is in irregular settlements that the supply is most precarious, inconsistent and expensive, with poorer groups more often forced into the informal water market. Local government appears incapable of securing adequate water services and of regulating supply on an equal basis.