Dad Successfully Gets Church To Change Sexist Men's Restroom

And made a small step forward toward parental equality in public spaces in the process.

Every parent should have access to a baby changing station when they're out with their child. Unfortunately, public restrooms reinforces the sexist stereotype that only mothers change their child's diaper. While many women's restrooms are equipped with changing stations, men's restrooms aren't as are family-friendly. 

Dad blogger Clint Edwards came across this issue at his local church and shared his frustration with fellow church goers. Recently, he saw that voicing his concern was all worth it. In a Facebook post, he told his followers how he was able to make a difference just by speaking up. 

"I'm calling this a win!" he wrote. "As a father with a young child, I really hate when I can't change my kid. This isn't to say that I enjoy changing a squirmy poopy toddler. I don't. No one does. But I dislike placing the full burden of changing every single diaper on my wife even more. This whole parenting gig is a partnership." 

Edwards pointed out that he often runs into this issue both when he's in public with his wife, Mel, and when he's out with his children alone. 

"Mel and I go somewhere, and there is no changing table in the men's room, so I am placed with the option of changing her on a nasty bathroom floor, or asking my wife to handle it time and time again," he wrote. "Or I'm out alone with my children, and I am left with no option to change my child outside of taking her to the parking lot. I have serious empathy for those single dads with young children who are doing this without backup." 


Edwards recognizes that not all women's restrooms have changing stations. However, they have them much more often than men's restrooms. 

"If you are a father reading this, and you refuse to change your child and don't see this as a problem, cut the crap! You are making us all look bad," he continued. "And if you are a company with a changing table in both restrooms, you rock!" 

When Edwards shared his irritation at church, people listened. The next Sunday he showed up, he was pleasantly surprised to find that changing station had been added to the men's restroom. 

"So it's a small change. It's one men's room out of a million. But for me, as an active father with a desire to care for my child, it was a serious victory," he concluded. 

Other dads have also taken to advocating for parental equality in restrooms. Back in 2015, actor and A Plus co-founder Ashton Kutcher launched a campaign to push businesses to include changing tables in stores such as Target and Costco.  

"I would like my daughter to experience a world where gender doesn't dictate one's responsibility or limit one's opportunity," Kutcher told A Plus at the time. "Having changing tables in men's rooms is just a tiny step in the process of rectifying legacy gender discrimination. Men who are aware of this bias want to participate equally in the child care process and our society should support that. It's time to get our hands dirty."

By October 2016, former president Barack Obama signed into law the Bathrooms Accessible in Every Situation Act, also known as the BABIES act. This bill requires both men's and women's restrooms in publicly accessible federal buildings to contain baby changing stations. This has certainly helped to make positive strides, but the burden is still left on people like Edwards to raise awareness about the issue in non-federal buildings. Hopefully, other parents will be inspired to follow in his footsteps.

Cover image via Shutterstock.


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