Starting Fall 2019, the men’s third floor restroom located in the Queen Liliʻuokalani Center for Student Services, will be transformed into an all-gender restroom. Supported by students, faculty, and staff, this multi-stall restroom can be used by persons of all gender identities and expressions.
Please use the links below to access a building presentation, report, and frequently asked questions. Also included are links to the policies and guidelines on inclusive facilities, UH news on all-gender restrooms, and a map to other all-gender restrooms located on the UHM campus.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is an "All-Gender Restroom"?
This is a restroom facility that is usable by persons of all gender identies and that is not gender specific. All-gender restrooms differ from gender-specific facilities that are designated for use solely by either men or women. All-gender restrooms can be multi-stall or single-stall facilities.
Who will benefit from all-gender restrooms?
All-gender restrooms create opportunities for families with children and caregivers of different genders to access the restroom facility. In addition, they also provide a safe option for transgender, non-binary, and gender non-conforming individuals. For UH News on all-gender restrooms: https://www.hawaii.edu/news/2016/08/16/uh-manoa-now-provides-all-gender-restrooms/
Why are all-gender restrooms needed in QLC?
There is a student need for all-gender restrooms. These facilities are supported by students at UHM. The Associated Students of the University of Hawaiʻi and the Graduate Student Organization passed resolutions in 2015 calling for more all-gender restrooms at UH Mānoa.
Will this be the first all-gender restroom at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa campus?
No. The University of Hawaiʻi has provided single stall all-gender restrooms since August 2016. UH Mānoa currently has nine single stall all-gender restrooms and 73 percent of the restrooms in the residence halls are all-gender restooms. For a map of UHM All-gender restrooms: https://manoa.hawaii.edu/titleix/uhm-all-gender-restrooms-map/
Will this be the first all-gender multi-stall restroom at UH?
No. If established at the UHM campus, this all-gender restroom will be one of two all-gender multi-stall restrooms established at UH M#257;noa—the other restroom in being established at the Kakaʻako Campus for JABSOM.
How much will making all-gender restrooms cost?
No structural changes are needed. Restroom conversion involves placement of a new sign. All restrooms in QLC already have locking individual stalls with privacy partitions. Implementation cost to the university is minimal.
Aren't all-gender restrooms unsafe?
No. According to the Transgender Law Center, the Human Rights Campaign, and the American Civil Liberties Union, there is no statistical evidence that all-gender restrooms are any less safe than gender-specific restrooms (Bianco 2015). In fact, some assert that all-gender restrooms might in fact be safer. Even though bathroom attacks are infrequent, the signage on gender-specific restrooms only provides an illusion of safety and does not prevent perpetrators from entering these spaces (Chan 2011). Additionally, gender-specific bathrooms have been shown to pose a risk to transgender individuals. The U.S. Transgender Survey (USTS), the largest survey of transgender people (27,715 respondents) found the following:
- 59% [16,351 respondents] have avoided bathrooms in the last year because they feared confrontations in public restrooms at work, at school, or in other places.
- 12% [3,325 respondents] report that they have been harassed, attacked, or sexually assaulted in a bathroom in the last year.
- 31% [8,591 respondents] have avoided drinking or eating so that they did not need to use the restroom in the last year.
- 24% [6,651 respondents] report that someone told them they were using the wrong restroom or questioned their presence in the restroom in the last year.
- 9% [2,494 respondents] report being denied access to the appropriate restroom in the last year.
- 8% [2,217 respondents] report having a kidney or urinary tract infection, or another kidney-related medical issue, from avoiding restrooms in the last year. USTS 2015
What is our current UH policy on restrooms and gender?
Everyone already has the right to use the restroom that corresponds to their gender identity, NOT their sex assigned at birth. All-gender restrooms can create more options for people to choose from to meet their comfort and privacy needs. Further, UH policy on Inclusive Facilities EP 1.205 makes provisions for all-gender multi-stall restrooms.*
Bianco, Marcie. "Statistics Show Exactly How Many Times Trans People Have Attacked You in Bathrooms." Mic. April 02, 2015. https://mic.com/articles/114066/statistics-show-exactly-how- many-times-trans-people-have-attacked-you-in-bathrooms#.O5NJIhSke
Chan, Marco. "Safe Bathrooms For All." The Harvard Crimson. February 17, 2011. http://www.thecrimson.com/article/2011/2/17/bathroom-genderneutral-gender-many/
U.S. Transgender Survey. "Harassment of Transgender People in Bathrooms and Effects of Avoiding Bathrooms." 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey. July 2016. http://www.ustranssurvey.org/preliminary-findings/
*Executive Policy 1.205
Policy and Guidelines on Inclusive Facilities
In furtherance of the University of Hawaiʻi's (the "University") commitment to providing a learning and working environment that is safe, accessible, and respectful of all individuals, the University is dedicated to ensuring that restrooms and other facilities support a campus community of diverse students, faculty, staff, and visitors inclusive of their gender identity and/or gender expression. This policy addresses new construction and existing restrooms, showers, locker rooms, changing facilities, and wellness/lactation rooms.
Additionally, in keeping with the University’s policy of nondiscrimination on the basis of gender identity and gender expression, all employees, students, and visitors have the right to use the facilities that correspond with their gender identity and to be free from harassment and discrimination. The University’s policies on nondiscrimination (EP 1.202) and/or sex discrimination and gender-based violence (EP 1.204) should be consulted in any circumstances where discrimination and/or harassment is alleged.
A. List of sources which relate to or impact this policy:
- Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
- The Rehabilitation Act of 1973
- The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
- Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972
- Chapter 378 of the Hawai‘i Revised Statutes
- Executive Order 13672
- Applicable nondiscrimination provisions of collective bargaining agreements
B. Link to Executive Policy EP 1.202 – University Statement of Nondiscrimination and Affirmative Action https://www.hawaii.edu/policy/docs/temp/ep1.202.pdf
C. Link to Executive Policy EP 1.204 – Interim Policy and Procedure on Sex Discrimination and Gender-Based Violence http://www.hawaii.edu/policy/docs/temp/ep1.204.pdf
D. Link to Administrative Policy AP 9.920 – Discrimination Complaint Procedures for Students, Employees, and Applicants for Admission or Employment http://www.hawaii.edu/policy/docs/temp/ap9.920.pdf
Additional UH Information
For UH News on all-gender restrooms:
Soundbites from 2016:
- Cameron Miyamoto - Director, UH Mānoa LGBTQ+ Center (12 seconds)
"There is a mandate for this nationally and I'm really proud that UH is ahead of the curve. We started working on this long before it was the law and long before there was federal guidance."
- Robert Bley-Vroman - Chancellor, UH Mānoa (11 seconds)
"People sometimes ask me if there was resistance; the answer is no. There is no resistance. People know it's the right thing to do. It will help Mānoa be the ʻohana that we want it to be."
- Don Straney - Chancellor, UH Hilo (6 seconds)
"No one should feel uncomfortable in a restroom; that's why we established all-gender bathrooms on campus."
- Doris Ching - Chancellor, UH West Oʻahu (15 seconds)
"We are pleased to take this long-awaited and necessary action by providing gender-neutral restrooms; we hope that all persons will feel safer in every part of the UH West Oʻahu campus at all times."