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Nappy Changing Facilities/Areas in Men’s Toilets

(16 Posts)
forgivemeengishisnotmy1st Sun 16-Aug-15 00:51:57

This is the first time I come the campaign session. Hope it goes ok.

For a long time I feel very strongly about the above or rather the lack of such facilities available in men’s public toilets or in disabled toilets. Today I feel brave and want ask if many parents out there feel this is in fact a big issue in today’s culture. This is about providing the equipment so that fathers can do the job too. More importantly this is also making the expectation of the sharing childcare responsibility visible, realistic and normal. Often we hear from the media such as school is where to start focusing on equality education. But I believe equality needs to start from the very basic family live/expectation in our everyday environment. Truly a simple nappy changing area doesn’t cost a lot of space and money for any decent size shop, department store, shopping arcade and family holiday/outing attraction to provide the facility either in their disabled toilet or men’s toilet as well as in women’s toilet. I wish there are some sorts of legislation to reinforce that parents/carers of both sexes shall have the equal accessibility to all the essential childcare facilities in public buildings.
This is too late for my own generation of mothers. However I wish my children can have a more equal shares of childcare with their partners.

Pteranodon Sun 16-Aug-15 01:08:29

I had no idea they often weren't in the men's, my husband would always happily take our baby off to change him and only mentioned in passing (because he'd been given a dirty look by a woman understandably unhappy to see him in there) that he used the table in the ladies' if there wasn't one in the gents'!

forgivemeengishisnotmy1st Sun 16-Aug-15 01:28:35

Hope to hear from some fathers' perspectives too. Perhaps they (dads) can tell us if there are nappy changing areas in many Gents' toilets or may be I'm wrong.

ThisOneAndThatOne Sun 16-Aug-15 02:04:49

We have holidayed a lot in the U.S. and it seems to be very common there to have facilities in the men's loos.

LittleBearPad Sun 16-Aug-15 02:07:36

I've never guven it much thought DH heads off with dC and changing bag and brings them back squeaky clean. I've never really thought about the logistics nor has he commented.

forgivemeenglishisnotmy1st Sun 16-Aug-15 07:34:14

My youngest s 9 now so has the situation changed a lot in the last five / six years?

tortoisesarefab Sun 16-Aug-15 07:46:34

I noticed this the other day in a big childrens safari park. Changing facilities in the women's toilets only. It's ridiculous, I often work weekends so dh takes the children out on his own, I have no idea where he is meant to change dd

SummerDreams13 Sun 16-Aug-15 07:59:01

Yes, wholeheartedly yes! Was literally just ranting about this to DH - a good example of 'casual sexism' if that's the right term. I'm lucky enough to have a partner who absolutely considers nappy changing as much his responsibility as mine, yet time and again he takes our 9 month old only to return minutes later because the only facility is in the women's loo. It massively bugs me - why should it always be me who has to leave the meal to deal with it?! I just feel it's another everyday contradiction to the notion that, as a society, we consider childcare to be both parents' responsibility. Would love a campaign around this to raise awareness and challenge it!

VashtaNerada Sun 16-Aug-15 08:09:49

I completely agree although I've actually not come across anywhere that hasn't had a changing table in disabled or men's loos. I'm in London if that's relevant.
If it really does happen that some places only have a changing table in the Ladies then of course men should use it, but I can understand some women feeling uncomfortable if it isn't clear that men will be using that space. Also, presumably there are lots of disabled people sick of waiting for the loo while someone faffs about with nappies! There definitely needs to be some clear guidance for businesses on this.

forgivemeenglishisnotmy1st Sun 16-Aug-15 09:38:24

Should this go further to say may be a separate room dedicated only for breastfeed. If a business can afford the space then perhaps there should be a diaper lounge equipped with a small play area to help to keep some older siblings occupied while their parent/s are busy with their baby brother/sister.

westcountrywoman Sun 16-Aug-15 09:44:57

I agree. TBH it wouldn't bother me if a man was using the changing table in the ladies' - it's not like we're running around naked in the handwash area.

forgivemeenglishisnotmy1st Sun 16-Aug-15 10:22:29

west, it wouldnt bother me either i would rather admire him. Also women almost certain will have their cubicle doors closed unlike men. Besides in the ladies nappy changing area usually located near the sinks or entrance anyway.

PandaMummyofOne Sun 16-Aug-15 14:01:27

When DS was a baby DP was more than happy to go and change him, but often couldn't because of the lack of changing facilities.

He once took DS out on his own to a large shopping centre. He wasn't able to change him because there was nowhere safe for him to do this.

So he went into the ladies. The security guards actually stopped him and asked what he was doing. When he explained the security guard asked why DS's mother wasn't there to do that. hmm

Another large shopping centre close to us, introduced family rooms. They're lovely. Areas to change, for children to have a little rest and play, toddler toilets, places for mums to BF comfortably on lovely armchairs or warm up bottles/food. Best of it being dads can go in too. It's definitely somewhere we find ourselves a lot more based purely on this.

forgivemeenglishisnotmy1st Sun 16-Aug-15 14:45:36

Panda, thats why i believe equilaty focus has to start from family live/expectation in our everyday environment. Just being told to believe men and women are equal in school just isnt good enough. We need to equip our environment to accommodate the equilaty visually and practically. I really wish to see at least a simple nappy change station in as many gents as in ladies. Equal number of diaper stations in both mens and womens loos.

mrsmilkymoo Tue 18-Aug-15 08:31:43

I agree, it would be great to have more changing facilities in men's loos. DH is always happy to go and change DD if I'm still eating or something but many times has been unable to do this. We spent a week on holiday in Scotland and there were quite a few places which only had a changing table in the ladies.

What bugs me more though is the number of places which have no changing facilities at all - even some National Trust places that we've visited recently. We've often had to resort to using the car boot (but that's not easy on the days we're travelling and it's packed up!)

Weekipper Tue 18-Aug-15 08:39:53

I was pleasantly surprised that at Edinburgh book festival they had a separate tent next to the toilets for nappy changing, and a changing station in disabled loo.

I agree that a changing tray doesn't take much room and should be in both toilets or accessible to all.

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