Seattle’s LGBTQ task force convened to help fight hate crimes on Capitol Hill is approaching the problems of bias and inequality from all angles. In one of the first recommendations from the 30-member committee, Mayor Ed Murray’s office has proposed legislation that would require all single-occupancy restrooms in the city to be available as all-gender facilities.
“This legislation is a powerful and appropriate step in serving the needs of our time and place,” Marsha Botzer, founding member and secretary of Equal Rights Washington, former chair of the National LGBTQ Task Force, and founder of the Ingersoll Gender Center, said in the City Hall announcement.
The proposed legislation “would require all City-controlled and privately operated places of public accommodation to designate existing or future single-occupant restrooms as all–gender facilities. All existing City-controlled single-occupant restrooms (across all City departments, from City Hall to Parks) will be re-signed to conform to this new standard.”
On Capitol Hill, the new proposed signage won’t likely require many changes at local businesses where most bathrooms — including a few of the multiple-occupancy variety — might already be considered fully in compliance.
“The transgender community deserves the dignity and respect that most people take for granted,” Murray said in the announcement. “That’s why Seattle is building upon our history of being one of the most welcoming cities in the world by ensuring restrooms are available and safe for all.”
Friday night, the third annual Seattle Trans* Pride rally and march takes place starting at Cal Anderson. Organizers estimated a few thousand people participated in the 2014 rally and march on Broadway.