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Gender-neutral bathrooms are still inaccessible to students on campus

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Gender-neutral bathrooms are still inaccessible to students on campus

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Since the implementation of the California’s Equal Restroom Access Act in 2017, many places of business, government agencies and public areas are required to switch their single-user restrooms signages to gender-neutral.

Anthropology Professor Anastasia Panagakos, who has been teaching at Cosumnes River College since 2007, said the campus needs to be more conscious of it’s transgender and LGBTQ population in terms of accessible restroom facilities.

“The campus has 22 single-user restrooms,” said Panagakos. “Five of them are in the Southeast Office Complex but two are for faculty members, so that leaves three which are accessible to students.”

The student friendly all-gender restrooms are in the Veterinary Technology building, the Learning Resource Center and the Southeast Office Complex, according to the campus map on CRC’s webpage.

Alejandro Anguiano, a sociology major and Student Ambassador for the Student Life and Leadership Center, said the student-accessible unisex bathrooms are difficult to reach because they are spaced out on campus.

“How many students know where the faculty building is located?” asked Anguiano. “They are always locked I have to run around campus to find one that’s open for me to use.”

Additionally, Architecture Professor Jason Ellis said all the new construction on campus must have at least one single-user gender-neutral bathroom in the building, as most new California community colleges are required to do.

Amber Arnold, a 30-year-old management major, said there’s no need for unisex bathrooms because multi-purpose restrooms exist.

Unisex restrooms are made to be used as family bathrooms and they solve many problems that are being faced today, according to an article by CNN.

Mack Hickman, a 25-year-old political science major, said he believes it’s a person’s right to adopt to whichever bathroom that suits them, especially if it helps them to feel comfortable concerning their gender and self.

A 2017 study published by The National Center for Biotechnology Information stated that transgender, cisgender and non gender-conforming students experience distress when going into gender-assigned restrooms because of unwarranted judgement and harassment.

Trystan Simpson, an 18-year-old animation major, said they have experienced being policed by women for using the ladies restroom because of their identity.

“I wish I could explain that I am non-binary to the people that are quick to judge me,” said Simpson.

Rejecting transgender people from using public restrooms does not ensure anyone privacy, according to the National Center for Transgender Equality.

Cayla Lagousis, a 25-year-old biology major, said the restroom accessibility problem coincides with society’s misunderstanding of diversity in people’s identities.

“I would like a better environment for the next batch of students who are like me and don’t feel comfortable or safe with the way they are treated,” said Lagousis. “As a student who uses the gender-neutral bathrooms regularly, I would appreciate more in number and in frequency on campus.”

To locate where the all-gender restrooms are, please visit https://www.crc.losrios.edu/about/campusmap.

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Gender-neutral bathrooms are still inaccessible to students on campus