University in Kent, Ohio, recently recognized its
transgender students by opening a gender-neutral restroom,
joining a growing trend on U.S. campuses.
restroom was relabeled with a new sign bearing four images:
a man, a woman, a person in a wheelchair, and a man
and a woman separated by a slash. The bathroom, near
restrooms bearing the conventional labels of
"men" and "women," has a single
toilet, a sink, a diaper-changing table, and a
power-assisted door for the handicapped. Campus maps mark it
as a "family restroom."
The bathroom was
designated "gender-neutral" after the Queer
Liberation Front asked university administration about
opening a restroom inclusive to transgender students.
Roy Kirksey, a
university official, said the bathroom would meet the
special needs of those beyond the transgender population,
reported the Associated Press. He stressed that
gender-neutral restrooms are becoming more common,
appearing in medical centers and office buildings.
"There's no sign up there that this is for
transgender or anything," Kirksey explained to
the Associated Press. "It's for anyone who
wants to use it."
restrooms are opening on campuses across the nation,
including universities in Georgia, Massachusetts, and
Arizona. (The Advocate)