Converting all sex-specific single-stall restrooms on campus to gender neutral is the newest step forward in Colorado State University’s efforts to become more gender inclusive.
Through this action, there is now a place for everyone to use the restroom without the questioning of sex or gender identity.
Students are working to create standard signage across campus for new gender inclusive restrooms. The subcommittee for this project created a survey with three sign alternatives and is seeking student feedback. The survey is available until Nov. 6, and can be found at http://studentvoice.com/col/genderinclusiverestroomsurvey.
About 54 percent of transgender or non-binary people experience adverse health effects from avoiding the use of sex specific public restrooms, according to the Williams Institute Center for Transgender Equality. Shay Trettin, a transgender CSU student, said it comes as a relief to have inclusive restrooms available to him now.
“Normally, what I do, is just avoid going to bathrooms on campus which can, and has happened to me before coming here, give you a urinary tract infection,” Trettin said. “Holding in your pee is not beneficial at all, so that’s one of the really big reasons I think there should be gender neutral restrooms on campus.”
Currently, there are about 58 single-stall restrooms available for use on campus, but they are not labeled as gender inclusive. Dani Nicodemus, one of the students advocating for gender neutral bathrooms across campus, said this step in awareness of the transgender and non-binary community is something that she thinks students will be welcome to.
“I think with our generation, we’re very accepting of other people and I think other people want to see this movement and see this change,” Nicodemus said.
Nicodemus and Kelly Connor, a senior studying health and human sciences, started this movement when they created a petition advocating for best-practice policies for gender inclusive facilities, which included gender inclusive restrooms around campus designated for anyone to use.
“When we collected the petitions over the summer, we collected almost 300 signatures in about an hour and a half, so people were overwhelmingly supportive,” Connor said.
Collegian Reporter Katy Mueller can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @katymueller13.