University introduces gender-neutral toilets on campus
The University of Northampton is pleased to report that gender-neutral toilets have been introduced on campus.
The move has been taken following consultation with the LGBTQ Society and specific members of the student population who have visited the Students’ Union.
The University has made existing single cubicle disabled toilets gender neutral, which means there will be no situation in which two people of any gender identity will be in the same room, ensuring they can feel comfortable using the space. This differs from gender-neutral toilets at some other universities in the UK, where entire bathrooms have been designated gender neutral. This is a solution proposed by the students themselves, discussed and agreed at the Union’s Student Council.
Victor Agboola, President of the Students’ Union at the University, said: “There is a growing population of trans students, with those who identify as transgender, non-binary or are inter-sex. A number of universities across the country, including Bradford, Bath, Staffordshire and Manchester, already have gender-neutral toilets.
“Some students would be more comfortable using gender-neutral toilets and at the start of this academic year we had a number of students here visit the Students’ Union and tell us exactly that.”
Nick Woodward, Vice President of the Students’ Union, added: “The provision of gender-neutral toilets, or all-gender toilets, is a matter of accessibility and of inclusivity. That some students described having to ‘hold it in’ until they got home was, to us, unacceptable and so we worked with the University to see its speedy introduction.
“Their provision will see a space they feel comfortable in using, that does not infringe upon the comfort of any other person and should aid in reducing the stress these students have felt on a daily basis.”