When you design a washroom either in a brand new building, or when redesigning your current facilities, you have the chance to create the best possible solution for your patrons. But reaching this aim can only happen if you truly consider the needs of all those who will use the space.
At the forefront of your considerations should be the reality that washrooms are a necessity, not a luxury. Therefore, they need to be available to everyone regardless of their identity or possible impairments.
If you are looking at the best ways to design your washroom, here’s some food for thought where inclusivity is concerned.
As a UK installer of accessible washrooms, the topic of accessibility is something we’re passionate about. So what does it actually mean?
Quite simply, you must consider the needs of users who are impaired within every element of the design. Factors to include are whether disabled users can access the space without unnecessary convenience or risk of injury.
Despite the generic sign, we’re all used to seeing to denote a disabled toilet, disabilities span many different impairments. As an example, the washroom isn’t just going to be used by wheelchair users but those who are visually impaired too. So the design of the washroom needs to consider users of various abilities within the overall ease of use.
Gender Neutral Washrooms
In recent years we’ve become a lot more of a progressive society where the discussion of gender is concerned. However, there is no specific requirement for gender-neutral bathrooms within current HSE guidance. Instead, it simply states employers must provide “separate facilities for men and women”.
Therefore, the decision whether or not to include gender-neutral bathrooms, or at least additional lockable washroom facilities with no specific gender is down to the building owner.
Gender-neutral washrooms are something we are beginning to see more of, especially in public locations such as transport hubs and stadiums. Their presence can offer a lot of reassurance for those who may be transitioning or identify as gender-neutral.
If your washroom is located in a public space such as a shopping centre, transport hub or restaurant then it should ideally be child friendly. Namely, this includes incorporating enough space for pushchairs as well as providing baby changing facilities. Read more on child-friendly washrooms here.
Remember also that it’s not just mums that change the nappies either! A father called Donte Palmer went viral on social media, after realising the difficulties of trying to change his son in a men’s bathroom, which typically do not contain changing facilities.
One solution is to create a separate baby changing facility that is neither in the ladies or men’s washrooms, especially if your washrooms aren’t gender-neutral. That way parents of all genders can change their baby’s in a safe and hygienic way.
Washroom Installation UK
Are you interested in learning more about commercial shower installation, or commercial washrooms in general? Inspired Washrooms installs commercial washrooms across the UK.
Whether you’re after a refresh of your current washrooms, or to specifically cater to any of the points we’ve mentioned above, we’re here to help.
Please get in touch on 0115 811 4242 and our friendly team will get back to you.