City of Gainesville single occupancy bathrooms soon to be changed to gender-neutral facilities

GAINESVILLE, Fla (WCJB) -- Could it be the start of another controversy over City of Gainesville restrooms?
Over the years there have been bathroom battles over transgender rights and locking them up at night.
Now single occupancy bathrooms in general government buildings will change to gender-neutral facilities next week.

Here's when you can expect to see the new signs going up.

There are 24 bathrooms across 6 City of Gainesville buildings which will get new signage, 18 of them in the RTS and the old library combined with a few scattered across other locations

The only change to the bathrooms will be the signs designating who can or can't use them, no other renovations.

The City of Gainesville's Communications Director Shelby Taylor explained, " we are going to be changing some signs across general government buildings we're going to be removing the signs now accompanying single stall and single lock bathrooms to be gender neutral signs."
TV20's Landon Harrar reported, "now these changes won't go into effect for every City of Gainesville bathroom there's only 24 and they're ones just like this one, one bathroom one door one lock. Where before you would have two bathrooms side by side, one for men and one for women, now they'll all have signs on them so anybody no matter how you identify will be able to use them."

City of Gainesville employees like Gilbert Means who will be most affected by these changing signs say it's a way to make sure everyone feels comfortable and included.
"The city is now moving forwards aggressively trying to represent the culture of today, the dynamics of the culture today. With these facilities, I think it will make it easier for the citizens of Gainesville to be able to use those facilities."

The change won't be made at public-access facilities like Bo Diddley Community Plaza or other City of Gainesville run parks.
Taylor said, "Only the single occupancy bathrooms which are in the RTS buildings, fleet, the old library building, City hall, Public works, facilities of that nature are where the single occupancy bathrooms reside."

Our non-scientific online poll tonight shows: almost 80 percent of people who participated are not in favor of the change and would prefer the bathrooms to stay as they are.

There are plans to also change the signs in GRU's building in the coming months, there was no direct time given for the change only that it will be sometime next week and shouldn't take too long to finish.