Regardless of a person's political or religious feelings toward the notion of transgendered people, it should be easy to see why individuals who've changed their gender identity may experience some complications and confusion when attempting to use toilets in public bathrooms.
Maybe "complications and confusion" don't do the transgender community's dilemma justice. An article recently appearing on the Daily Beast points out that transgendered individuals are sometimes subjected to violence and harassment during trips to the men's or women's room that the rest of us take for granted.
"People get stopped and asked if they’re in the right bathroom. People are attacked. There is a kind of gender policing going on," Jack Harrison of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, told the Daily Beast. "It can be really hard to be out in the world."
Harrison's organization has released a study that shows that more than one-quarter of surveyed transgender individuals were blocked from using a public restroom at their school or college, while more than 20 percent encountered a similar situation at work.
To help combat this issue, Harrison developed TranSquat, a mobile application with which transgendered people can use their smartphones to scan whatever area they're in for the closest available gender-neutral bathroom.
New York State community college installs trans-friendly bathrooms
In other news pertaining to bathrooms designed for use by anyone, regardless of whether they identify themselves as a man or a woman, Jefferson Community College in Watertown, New York, has dropped the gender-requirements from five of its public bathrooms.
"Anybody can go into those bathrooms. They shut the door and they're used by themselves. And they're for anyone," vice president of schools Betsy Penrose told WNYF, a Fox New affiliate.
Upon hearing news of the single-use washing facilities on their campus, students interviews by the news source sounded mostly supportive of the initiative.
"I think it's really cool," said Harley Gilbo told the news provider. "I think its a great way to avoid conflict for people who are transgender or don't know where they are."
WNFY described one student it spoke with as "not entirely sold on the idea," but as uncomfortable as she may be, she confirmed that she would not hesitate to use one of the gender-neutral bathrooms if no other toilets were available.
Labels: Toilets and Bidets