Blog: Better Public Restrooms
It must have been on live TV, perhaps a sporting event, when I saw it. I’m one of those people who will do anything to avoid watching commercials. The fact that I was actually watching a commercial is noteworthy. But the deep and measured buttery baritone voice-over grabbed me right away: “Dignity . . . this thing you can neither see nor measure, but that demands the return of small moments in attempts to steal.”
The American Restroom Association is very gratified to be closely connected to the Washington, DC area efforts of the People for Fairness Coalition (PFFC) and their Downtown DC Public Restroom Initiative. PFFC Advisor Marcia Bernbaum and volunteers have been working tirelessly to see two public restrooms installed in areas of desperate need in our nation’s capital. It is heartening to see their progress, but also frustrating to witness how exasperating the effort is. As you can read below, the initial introduction date of the legislation was Spring 2017(!). Marcia provided the following update:
My new friend, Marcia Bernbaum, Mentor and Advisor to the People for Fairness Coalition (PFFC) in Washington, D.C., rang me up.
“Where is it?” she asked.
“Where’s what?” I replied.
“You know. The list.”
“The list?” I started to get concerned.
“THE LIST the ARA published in 2015 that catalogs the long, long rolls of the restroom challenged. It’s been a great resource for us. It has really helped us make our case for more public restrooms in our nation’s capital.”
Early on in the pandemic, news outlets were flush with stories about the concerns surrounding public restrooms. People were worried that IF they went out, they’d have no place to go. Even in the best of recent times, public restrooms in the US were dismal or just plain non-existent. ARA President and Co-founder, Steve Soifer, calls them “the laughingstock of the developed world.”
“Can an establishment deny me access to their restrooms?” This ranks as probably the number one most asked question to the American Restroom Association. The answer unfortunately is “yes,””no,” and “maybe.” We’ve provided some links in the copy below for your information.
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INVENTORS, MANUFACTURERS, SUPPLIERS, & SERVICE PROVIDERS: We want to hear your stories about how you are leading change in restroom design and maintenance!