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You’ve Been Using a Gender-Neutral Bathroom this Whole Time

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Even with the growing understanding and continued support of the LGBTQ+ community, there are still naysayers who continue to speak negatively on any efforts made to stand in solidarity with our LGBTQ+ friends.

Recently, companies have been highlighting the implementation of their recently added “All Gender Restrooms” in an effort to destigmatize the concept of gender. Many took to the social media streets indicating that gender-neutral restrooms are ‘dangerous’ and ‘sexual fluidity is insanity.’

In a poll conducted by Debate.org, 53% of voters were not in favor of gender-neutral restrooms making statements such as: “This just makes it easier for anyone to follow me into the restroom” – as if the sign that says “Women” or “Men” could prohibit anyone from doing so in the first place. What’s even more appalling is that people only have an issue with all gender restrooms, when it is labeled as ‘All Gender Restroom.”

The University of New Haven has 24 gender-neutral restrooms, not labeled explicitly as so, but are used by all members of the campus community. You may be familiar with the single restroom on the first floor of Kaplan Hall near the north end of the building? That’s an all gender restroom. Or maybe you’ve seen the restroom on the third floor of the library? You got it, all gender. Maxcy Hall alone has four gender-neutral restrooms.

For on-campus residents, residence halls such as Bethel Hall and Winchester Hall have commonplace restrooms with no gender label, and people feel comfortable using them.

So why does this matter bother people?

While being concerned for your safety from harassment is valid, gender-neutral bathrooms are not to blame. Showing support and standing in solidarity with people is what helps to create a safe space on campus and helping our friends feel even more comfortable and accepted on campus.

Gender-neutral restrooms should not be looked at through a negative lens, as their existence has never been known to be a threat to others. The attachment of ‘danger’ to these facilities is only an attempt to continue to exclude persons from being comfortable in their own skin and being comfortable in their community.

Accept those around you and support those who differ from you. With an open mind and understanding, you could be the one that makes this campus feel a little more like home to another.

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You’ve Been Using a Gender-Neutral Bathroom this Whole Time