Bathroom discrimination


CHARLES CITY, Iowa – It’s quite the setup at the Floyd County Courthouse. You have a men’s only bathroom on the third floor, ladies employee only bathroom on the second, and women’s public restroom on the first.

Janelle Herrman spends a lot of time on the third floor of the courthouse.

“On the third floor, which is where people show up to go to court, there is only one men’s bathroom,” Hermann said.

It’s never been a hot-button issue to Herrman, more of a concern.  She’s a paralegal and victim witness coordinator.

“I think there should be a women’s bathroom on the third floor,” Herrmann said.

It soon might.  Mark Kuhn with the Floyd County Board of Supervisors has concerns with the bathroom setup too.

“Of those six restrooms, only one on the first floor of the courthouse is open to the female member of the general public,” Kuhn said.

So he led a tour Monday to show other supervisors the issues.

“Last Monday, I learned that one of the stalls in the only restroom available to female members of the general public has a locked door, to gain entry you need this key,” Kuhn said showing the supervisors the only key.

He wants to start the conversation as to how to fix these inconvenient problems, like why a male has to go to the top floor to use a toilet.

“When veterans ask where the nearest restroom is she tells them to use this one, I’m glad she does,” Kuhn said on the ground floor of the courthouse.

The hopeful outcome:  Kuhn wants the lock on the women’s bathroom removed, ground floor to have a uni-sex single stall bathroom and see what’s in the budget to make a bathroom handicap accessible.

The county board of supervisors will discuss the issue at their next meeting.

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