The Growth Of Gender-Neutral Restrooms - What It Takes To Convert
As facility managers strive to accommodate building occupants and visitors, it should come as no surprise that there has been a growth in gender-neutral restrooms. After all, converting a single-stall restroom is as simple as changing the sign outside the door.
According to reports from Chicago Tribune, offering gender-neutral space is a safety and health issue. Advocate groups comment that it will prevent judgement from other restroom patrons and reduce anxiety.
To signal the universal restroom, new signs are being considered. One sign is a simple photo of a toilet and another illustrates both men and women in one sign. A third has a gender-neutral avatar with the words “For All Restroom.” And the last option has that same illustration, but reads “For All Toilet.”
According to the report, there are a few cities — Seattle and Austin, Texas — that have already instituted law requiring gender-neutral public restrooms. But, not everyone in the general public is receptive of the change.
Chicago Tribune ran a second article containing feedback received following the initial announcement of gender-neutral restrooms. Some expressed concerns with the cost in converting the restroom, which were quickly shot down after explanation that new signs can be purchased for less than $20.
Following the cost of converting restrooms, the largest complaint with a gender-neutral restroom is the perception from women that men are “slobs,” “gross” and “revolting” and, therefore, should not have to share. To get to the bottom of which restroom is dirtier, a few cleaning contractors in the area were contacted. Turns out, the women’s room was deemed dirtier, “hands down.”