Government extends deadline for toilet provision review

Following the announcement of a review into toilet provision for men and women last year, the government has extended the deadline for its call for evidence.

Both the original review announcement and the consultation statement claim that there has been “a trend towards replacing female-only facilities with gender neutral toilets” a concerning claim that LCR Pride Foundation and other LGBT+ and transgender support organisations are challenging.

Gendered Intelligence, among others, has asked for specific evidence that women-only spaces are being removed and it took to social media to share key points from its response to the call for evidence and urge others to also have their say.

It said: “Toilet facilities is a key area where trans, non-binary and other gender diverse people face barriers to access. Toilets designated male or female are not accommodating of non-binary people and any space with limited privacy tends to be challenging for trans people.The LGBT in Britain – Trans report (Stonewall 2017) showed that 48% of trans people don’t feel comfortable using public toilet.

“Trans people are entitled to use the spaces that (best) accord with their gender identity and should be supported to do so, in accordance with the Equality Act 2010. It states in the call for evidence that women’s toilets have been replaced by gender neutral toilets. We would like to see evidence to support this claim.

“Within a historical patriarchal context, public toilets were originally created exclusively for men. We welcome this review to address the ratio of women toilets needed versus the number for men. There is no hierarchy when it comes to inclusion. It is a matter of support and access for all. We call for inclusive and available universal public toilets which protect a person’s privacy, thus provide access to safe facilities for all.

“By advocating for universal toilets, we mean: purpose built, single floor to ceiling cubicle facilities that offer privacy and comfort for all.”

It went on to suggest key features of such universal toilets, including sanitary bins, enough space for all situations, such as parents with children, people who need personal assistance and wheelchair accessibility), with wash basins either contained in the cubicle or in a general space.

The call for evidence, which closes on Friday 26th February 2021, runs as the same time as LCR Pride Foundation’s own, regionally-focused survey The Great Liverpool City Region Loo Review, which seeks to identify what makes toilet facilities good for everybody, find out what people from across the region want and need in toilet facilities at work, at leisure and when they’re out and about.  It also aims to identify what needs are being met, as well as where provisions may be falling short of our expectations and requirements.

Andi Herring, CEO for LCR Pride Foundation, said: “The government’s review not only positions gender neutral facilities in opposition to gendered facilities, it also fails to examine the lack of provision of safe and suitable toilet facilities for trans and non-binary people – a well-documented and well evidenced issue – while simultaneously failing to provide evidence to support its claim that women-only toilets have been removed in favour of gender-neutral spaces.

“We urge people to respond both to the government call for evidence, to address this on a national level, and TDoV Liverpool’s Great Liverpool City Region Loo Review, to provide us with a clearer regional picture, so that positive change that is truly inclusive can be made.”

The Great Liverpool City Region Loo Review is part of TDoV Liverpool’s Toilets for Everybody campaign, which is supported by LCR Pride Foundation’s Community Fund. Both this survey and the government call for evidence closes on Friday 26th February 2021.


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LCR Pride Foundation is a registered charity in England & Wales, no 1185167. Registered Company 11754074.