• “Restroom Evolution Project” In Full Swing At The University Of Iowa

    Where you pee never seems to leave our news.

    According to a story by The Gazette:

    The University of Iowa is completing a project to make 147 gender-inclusive, single-user restrooms available throughout campus buildings.

    The restrooms “allow anyone to use them, regardless of gender identity,” said Teri Schnelle, coordinator for student life assessments and initiatives. “Essentially it’s private. If you feel most comfortable using a restroom that’s just you, you can.”

    Dr. Barry Schreier, director of University Counseling Services, said that the restrooms are important for many transgender students because it’s one less adjustment they have to make.

    “The restrooms that are currently signed as unisex will be updated to have the new sign type for single-user restrooms,” said Adele Vanarsdale, campus planner for Facilities Management.

    The signs will read, “Anyone can use this restroom regardless of gender identity or expression,” Vanarsdale said.

    The Counseling Center already has gender-inclusive restrooms, and some students have approached staff thanking them for having them available, Schreier said.

    “We have students come over from all the way across campus and use our restrooms,” Schreier said. “It’s one less thing for students to have to worry about.”

    Creating single use bathrooms for those among us who don’t seem to identify with normal male or female titles seems reasonable. This is a costly, yet less intrusive way for transgender folks to relieve themselves in private.

    At least we won’t have to deal with the outrage and confusion we are faced with by allowing men or formerly men to use the ladies room.

    The project first was proposed by an employee at the Women’s Resource & Action Center a few years ago, then taken up by the Division of Student Life last summer.

    Schnelle, Meagan Schorr of the WRAC, and Cindy Ann Kilgo, a now-graduated doctorate student in higher education and student affairs, spearheaded what they dubbed the Restroom Evolution project, Schnelle said. They led nearly 40 student, faculty and staff volunteers in conducting restroom audits across campus.

    Sean Finn, president of the UI Trans Alliance and a volunteer for restroom auditing, said the project demonstrates the progressive attitude of the UI with its goals of diversity and inclusion.

    “This is important for people who don’t identify as male or female,” Finn said. “They don’t have to put themselves in a box they don’t feel comfortable with. It’s about making everyone on campus feel comfortable.”

    Problem solved. It’s about making everyone FEEL comfortable.

    Don’t we have bigger problems than peoples feelings?

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