After GirlCode and bathroom peepers, the latest development in the Princeton bathrooms saga is…no more bathroom codes (maybe)!
USG is currently in discussion about replacing current four-digit code locks on dormitory bathrooms with prox-access locks, based on a recommendation by a team of USG and USLC (University Student Life Committee) members and representatives from Housing, Public Safety, and ODUS.
The USG Senate voted against the proposal yesterday (4 in support, 9 not in support, and 8 abstaining), and will vote again on the recommendation next week.
Currently, female corridor bathrooms require access through four-digit codes that are unique to each residential building. If new locks are installed, all students will be able to prox into any dormitory bathroom, regardless of gender.
The USG recommendation states that the motivations behind the potential change are the following:
– Eliminating gender inequity in the University’s bathroom access policy
– Responding to students’ requests to secure and restrict access to the bathrooms
– Allowing students to provide bathroom access to all of their guests, regardless of gender
– Enabling all students to have independence and privacy in making bathroom use selections
USG received 1,754 responses from student surveys about bathroom locks administered at the end of the 2014-15 academic year and the beginning of the current 2015-16 academic year. Of the respondents, 832 indicated they most frequently used female bathrooms, 621 male bathrooms, 278 in-suite bathrooms, and 23 gender neutral bathrooms.
29% of respondents indicated support for codes only on women’s bathrooms, 28% for codes on both women’s and men’s bathrooms, 56% for prox access for all students to all bathrooms, and 64% for no bathroom codes.
The USG recommendation stated that the “no-bathroom-lock option would address the issues of equity and convenience.” However, “significant differences…between respondents who most frequently used female bathrooms and respondents who most frequently used male bathrooms…indicated a desire for security at the bathroom door itself,” which is why the prox access system was proposed.
At this time, only dormitory corridor bathrooms in undergraduate dormitories would be affected by the change. Bathrooms in the graduate dormitories, Old and New Graduate College, and undergraduate and graduate and annexes will not have their locks replaced.
If the proposal is adopted by the University, lock installation could take place as soon as summer 2016, according to the recommendation.