The enforcement of signage requirements for single-occupant restrooms and the right to access public restrooms and public facilities on Bainbridge Island begins on October 1.
The Ordinance No. 2018-07, which was passed by the City Council on March 27 and took effect on April 4 with enforcement 180 days after the effective date (per Municipal Code), is designed to help achieve greater access to restrooms and public facilities for transgender and gender diverse people. It allows use of public restrooms and public facilities (e.g. locker room) by any person, regardless of sex or gender identity, and prevents those public spaces from being restricted to a specific sex or gender identity.
"The enactment of a gender-inclusive restroom ordinance, and the creation of a Human Rights section of our City’s Municipal Code, ensures that our community is providing basic and fundamental levels of dignity and respect to the Transgender community,” said Councilmember Matthew Tirman who proposed the ordinance.
“Being involved closely with the LGBTQ community in Kitsap, this was a priority for me upon taking office,” said Tirman. “I am so grateful that this ordinance was passed unanimously by our Council, and with gracious support from our City staff.”
The ordinance applies to public places on Bainbridge Island, including existing and future single-occupant bathrooms owned by all Island taxing districts. The ordinance requires all single-occupant restrooms in places of public accommodation (including hotels, restaurants, bars, shops and other retail establishments) to use appropriate signage to indicate the restrooms are designated for use by any person, regardless of sex or gender identity.
The Director of Planning and Community Development has approved a department policy to implement the ordinance. Any potential violations of the code can be reported via SeeClickFix. The report should include the date the violation was observed, the location of the violation, the individual or entity responsible for the violation, and, where applicable, a photograph of the restroom signage that violates the code.
Hyperlinks included in the article:
Ordinance No. 2018-07:
How to Report Violations: