Professor slams ‘inclusive’ toilets where she was forced to walk past a man using a urinal 


Staffordshire University professor slams ‘wholly unacceptable’ gender-neutral ‘inclusive’ toilets at museum where she was forced to walk past a man using a urinal

  • Sarahjane Jones told of incident at Science and Industry Museum, Manchester 
  • She said the shared toilet arrangement was ‘not an example of inclusivity’
  • Her Twitter post was liked, shared and commented on thousands of times

An academic has told of her horror at trying to use a gender neutral so-called ‘inclusive’ toilet at a museum – only to be confronted by a man using a urinal.

Assistant professor Sarahjane Jones, 35, spoke of her experience at the publicly-funded Science and Industry Museum in Manchester on social media describing it as ‘wholly unacceptable’.

Ms Jones, an assistant professor in patient safety at Staffordshire University, was at a conference run by The Health Research Authority yesterday when she experienced the intrusive toilet arrangement.

Assistant professor Sarahjane Jones, 35, spoke of her experience at the publicly-funded Science and Industry Museum in Manchester on social media describing it as 'wholly unacceptable'

Assistant professor Sarahjane Jones, 35, spoke of her experience at the publicly-funded Science and Industry Museum in Manchester on social media describing it as ‘wholly unacceptable’

Ms Jones, an assistant professor in patient safety at Staffordshire University, was at a conference run by The Health Research Authority yesterday when she experienced the intrusive toilet arrangement

Ms Jones, an assistant professor in patient safety at Staffordshire University, was at a conference run by The Health Research Authority yesterday when she experienced the intrusive toilet arrangement

The Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester, where the incident took place

The Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester, where the incident took place

She later wrote on Twitter: ‘I just entered this ‘inclusive toilet’ to find a man using a urinal, which I would have had to walk past to use the cubicle . This is not an example of inclusivity! And is wholly unacceptable.’

She accompanied the post with a photograph of the toilet door which showed outline silhouettes to represent male, female and a third, non-binary – and tagged both the museum and the HRA.

The post was liked, shared and commented on thousands of times.

Typical reactions included ‘madness’, ‘traumatising’, ‘Urinals shouldn’t be in inclusive toilets’ and: ‘A perfect reason to avoid places like this. Nobody should be made to share toilet facilities with the opposite sex!’

Another said: ‘So flashing your todger in a public inclusive toilet is ok but in public it’s an offence? Surely urinals should not be in inclusive toilets where women and children have to walk by?’

And another wrote: ‘Frankly I have given up trying to understand the world these days.’

But some hit back at Ms Jones. One wrote: ‘I’m so confused??? You want inclusiveness and to be treated the same yet you don’t even trust men enough to walk past while they are p***ing? Maybe we don’t feel comfortable when a women’s boob is out breastfeeding but just like going to the toilet it’s completely natural isn’t it’

Her experience is the latest controversy of its kind as organisations have rushed to try to be more ‘inclusive’ but have at the same time incurred the fury of many women.

Ms Jones' experience is the latest controversy of its kind as organisations have rushed to try to be more 'inclusive' but have at the same time incurred the fury of many women

Ms Jones’ experience is the latest controversy of its kind as organisations have rushed to try to be more ‘inclusive’ but have at the same time incurred the fury of many women

Earlier this year theatregoers paying hundreds of pounds to see Oscar-nominated actor Eddie Redmayne in hit West End musical Cabaret were up in arms over similarly gender neutral toilets.

It came after what were previously ‘ladies’ and ‘gents’ lavatories were merged at The Playhouse Theatre in London where Redmayne was then starring with Jessie Buckley in Cabaret, for which tickets can cost up to £250

One woman theatre-goer said ‘For a show where ticket prices are in the hundreds, the toilets at Cabaret are an absolute joke. We wanted to see gender fluidity on the stage – not in the queue for the bloody loos. It’s gross and invasive to share with men.’

Other institutions to experience similar backlashes over ‘inclusive’ toilets include the Barbican and Old Vic theatres

A survey this week showed 40% of Britons are against gender neutral toilets.

Ms Jones and the Science Museum have both been contacted for comment.

The museum is part of the Science Musuem Group, a non-departmental public body under the Department for Digital, Culture Media and Sport – whose secretary of state Nadine Dorries has previously spoken out against aspects of the increase in trans rights publicly.

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