Two Laws Push Gender-Neutral Restrooms, Housing Discrimination
Last week, Rhode Island Governor Dan McKee signed two bills into law regarding restroom access and housing discrimination for LGBTQ+ citizens, reports WPRI.com12. The first one involved any single-stall public restrooms now being designated as non-gender specific, effective Jan 1, 2022. The second one outlawed exceptions for property owners to withhold housing from applicants based on identity or sexual orientation.
The bills were signed at Youth Pride Rhode Island in Providence — an organization promoting young adults and youth of LGBTQ+. Rep. John Edwards, one of the sponsors behind the bills, believes the decision will help alleviate potential harassment and apprehension when using public restrooms.
“This bill would simply strip single-user bathrooms of any gender designation, which will go a long way toward improving the mental health of members of the transgender and non-binary community,” he says.
The bill singing marks one of several instances of gender-neutral restrooms gaining traction in recent months. Back in June, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) underwent a sizable overhaul by changing the signage associated with 165 of its single-use public restrooms to "All Gender/Family Restroom." To read more on that change, click here.