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Opinion

New signs, same behaviours

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A few months ago, SUS enacted their plan to change the washrooms on the second floor of the Student Union Building from binary male/female to gender-neutral washrooms. I have no issue with the change, and fully support the idea of gender-neutral restrooms becoming the norm. If they’d been that way since the building opened, I think that would have been a fantastic way to make everyone feel more comfortable. However, old habits die hard, and despite the change, there doesn’t seem to be any change in who’s actually using the facilities yet. I haven’t seen anyone who presents as femme entering or exiting what was formerly the men’s room, and I know I’d feel out of place pushing open that fogged glass door to what used to be the women’s room. As a university, UFV obviously has a high turnover in who’s using these rooms, and as new students come in, they won’t know which room used to be which. But for the time being, all that seems to have actually changed is that the urinals vanished over the summer, and it’s interesting to note how many people, myself included, are still tied up by ideas of gender, despite our best efforts.

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