Gender neutral toilets in sexual health clinic(7 Posts)
I was in the main, large sexual health clinic in my city at the beginning of the week and was extremely dismayed to see that the toilets are all now gender neutral.You open the door to a room and there's a row of individual cubicles with a sink inside. Which means that men and women will be in the corridor between the cubicles and the exit at the same time.
I was there for a smear because I have a long history of abuse and trauma. There's posters in the cubicles showing you how to take an intimate swab test. Obviously, people who use the clinic are clearly vulnerable.
I was in a state of high anxiety about my smear and the lack of a clearly defined women only space really upset me and made me feel so unsafe.
I emailed them to complain, no reply as yet but my hopes aren't high.
I hear you, Ghetto. It's happening everywhere, but a sexual health clinic is an especially stupid place for them not to make same-sex provision.
I really hope they do reply. That's an exceptionally insensitive place to have gender neutral toilets of the type you describe.
There are numerous Department of Health publications that stress the importance of single sex provision in the NHS; NHS Patient's Charter, NHS Single Sex Standards, Chief Nursing Officer Privacy and Dignity Report are a couple. There is also guidance published in 2009 for the Government's commitment to eliminating mixed sex provision:
"The Operating Framework required PCTs to work with provider units to publish, by the end of March 2009, plans to deliver substantial and meaningful reductions in the number of patients who report that they share sleeping or sanitary accommodation with members of the opposite sex. This supports the NHS commitment to providing every patient with same-sex accommodation, helping to safeguard their privacy and dignity when they are often at their most vulnerable. This means providing a same-sex sleeping area, bathroom and toilet facilities"
I'm not sure whether the sinks are in the cubicles or in a shared washroom - that might change what their definition of single sex provision is. Fundamentally, single sex facilities are a foundational NHS care element understood to be necessary in order for respect and dignity of the patient is maintained. I hope they reply to you, OP.
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