Gender neutral bathrooms make students feel welcome

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Gender neutral bathrooms located near forum classes for all students to use. Photo by Vivienne Aguilar.
Gender neutral bathrooms located near forum classes for all students to use. Photo by Vivienne Aguilar.

The students involved with the Delta Pride Center collaborated with the Student Services Vice President Lisa Cooper Wilkins to request that gender neutral bathrooms be put in the Shima building.

Discussions to get approval and specific locations began over a year ago and changes were made over the summer.

“I guess in general it’s a personal and professional philosophy” of the Student Services Department to be inclusive “wherever there is an opportunity,” said Wilkins. Making all types of people at Delta feel welcome is a work in progress.

Typically everyone goes about their days without thinking about the specifics on how to make the lives of others better, so when the chance to make a change comes around Wilkins believes “We should do something about it.”

The addition of Shima’s new bathrooms are an inclusive and safety issue says Pride Center.

Students fought to place more gender neutral bathrooms on campus, especially in Shima near the center. The conversions of specific gender bathroom in to gender neutral ones are on the first floor and fourth floor.

The bathrooms themselves weren’t changed only the signs, and locks were added. In the south forum gender neutral bathrooms are single stall and have existed before this change.

Human sexuality professors and shared their logic behind why gender neutral bathrooms are important to the student body.

Professor Baker explains they are “[For a] sense of safety. We have to listen to the needs of our students. We won’t make everyone happy, and that’s okay.”

“Without gender neutral bathrooms students won’t feel included. The bathrooms send a metamessage – you’re accepted here. We respect you here.” said Dr. Neal.

The only problem with our new gender neutral bathrooms is that males and females have been going into the multiple stall/urinal bathrooms in Shima at the same time.

It seems that the first person of either gender didn’t think to lock the door because of the multiple stalls, and they’re not used to having to lock the restrooms on campus like that.

This can create possible hazards, so please be aware of the types of bathrooms you’ll be walking into from now on. And as always, the campus police are able to be contacted at (209) 482-8453.

Overall the nonbinary and non gender conforming students now have more acceptance on campus. Thanks to the help of people who understand their needs and have worked to incorporate accommodations into all of our daily lives