'Gents' and 'ladies' toilets will be required in ALL public buildings
‘Gents’ and ‘ladies’ toilets will be compulsory in ALL public buildings under new planning laws in blow for campaigners for gender-neutral facilities
- Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick planned the change for public buildings
- Changes apply to offices, shops, hospitals, and some buildings having works
- Comes after a ‘technical’ review of the ratio of men’s and women’s lavatories
- A source close to Mr Jenrick said the changes were about ‘safeguarding’ women
Public buildings will be forced to have separate male and female toilets under plans to target activists for ‘gender-neutral’ loos.
Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick is to rewrite planning regulations to enshrine separate stalls in new buildings and demand partitions be installed in current unisex facilities.
The Telegraph reported that the move was in response to claims that women were finding it hard to find single-sex facilities.
It said the change would apply to offices, shops and entertainment venues, plus hospitals and other public services. It will also apply to buildings undergoing refurbishment, where consent is required for the works.
Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick will force public buildings to have separate male and female toilets under plans to target activists for ‘gender-neutral’ loos
Under the changes, buildings will have to separate male and female facilities, and make sure women’s cubicles are entirely self contained, with basins and hand dryers, for privacy
Oliver Dowden opened a new front in the Government’s ‘war on woke’ today as he demanded the ‘metropolitan bubble’ lose control of the nation’s cultural institutions.
The Culture Secretary demanded museums and galleries be as relevant to ‘a grandparent in Hartlepool or Harwich’ as a ‘millennial in Islington’ amid the ongoing row over monuments to Britain’s imperial past.
After attacks on statues of figures linked to the slave trade including Edward Colston in Bristol he said he wanted a ‘moreish’ attitude to history – including more statues being erected, not fewer.
Writing in the Telegraph today, Mr Dowden said: ‘Heritage organisations should be free from government meddling, but the people who run them also need the courage to stand up to the political fads and noisy movements of the moment.
‘And as national institutions, heritage organisations should take into account the views of the entire nation.
‘That’s why I want to make sure the boards of these bodies are genuinely diverse and not solely governed by people from metropolitan bubbles.’
Under the changes, buildings will have to separate male and female facilities, and make sure women’s cubicles are entirely self contained, with basins and hand dryers, for privacy.
A source close to Mr Jenrick told the paper: ‘It’s a necessity for women to have access to their own provision of toilets, but too often separate sex toilets are being removed by stealth – causing great distress.
‘We’ve listened to the concerns raised by women and the elderly about their security, dignity and safety and are going to maintain and improve safe guards by updating regulations in order to ensure that there is always the necessary provision of separate toilets for everyone in the community.
‘These changes will help to maintain safeguards that protect women and the proper provision of separate toilets, which has long been a regulatory requirement, will be retained and improved. We recognise there needs to be a public service provision for everyone in our community, and want to help to deliver on that objective.’
A review of the issue was launched by Mr Jenrick’s Communities department in November following several complaints over the way companies and authorities had replaced single sex restrooms with gender-neutral facilities.
The ‘technical’ review examined the ratio of female toilets needed compared to mens.
A source told the paper the report will ‘address misconceptions that removing sex-specific toilets are a requirement of equality legislation’.
‘The proposals will also bring building rules in line with existing statutory requirements for mixed sex toilet provision in schools,’ he added.
The Home Office, BBC, Channel 4 offices all have gender-neutral facilities.
The Old Vic theatre scrapped its men and women toilets and replaced them with ‘self-selection’ facilities that can be used by both genders in October 2019.
The historic London theatre in Waterloo had previously promised to double the number of women’s toilets to help tackle the industry-wide problem of long queues for female loos.
The Old Vic in Waterloo, London announced in October 2019 that its toilets would be ‘self-selection’ gender neutral facilities
All male and female toilets have been replaced with cubicles or urinals, which can be used by both men and women
However, instead, all male and female toilets have been replaced with cubicles or urinals, which can be used by both men and women.
The move prompted criticism on social media especially because the theatre had in 2018 run a £100,000 fund-raising campaign featuring Joanna Lumley and Glenda Jackson that specifically promised more women’s loos at the venue.
Under the new system women have access to 24 toilets, which would have to be shared with men. In contrast, men have access to 42 facilities, including urinals that only they would use.
Feminist campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez said on Twitter: ‘Just scanned back through my pics because I remember approvingly Tweeting about @oldvictheatre crowdfunder for specifically more ‘ladies loos’. And yep. They did not specify that there would in fact be no ladies loos at all.’
She added that the theatre had ‘ended up giving men 18 facilities practically speaking just for them, plus 24 they share with women.
‘So that’s 42 men have access to. Meanwhile women have access to 24 that they share with men. This is an improvement how?’
The change sparked outrage on Twitter after feminist campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez pointed out the theatre had crowdfunded for additional female toilets in 2018
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