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Primary school condemned for introducing gender-neutral toilets

Nick Duffy October 10, 2014

A primary school in Sussex is under fire, after it introduced unisex toilets to cater for transgender students.

Harbour Primary School in Church Hill, Newhaven, has been condemned by some parents for the decision, according to The Argus.

Headteacher Christine Terrey said: “We want all the children in our school to feel safe and be happy, and for our families to feel informed about how to effectively support transgender and gender questioning by their children, preventing any transphobia at the school.

“They are all cubicles and they all lock.

“We just want all our children to be able to use the toilets. We no longer have urinals because they were quite unpopular with the boys.”

However, parents have criticized the school, claiming that the decision makes children “uncomfortable”, and that they weren’t consulted on the changes.

An East Sussex County Council spokesperson told the newspaper: “As part of the rebuilding work that was carried out at Harbour Primary School during the summer, a decision was taken to install toilets which could be used by boys or girls, with lockable cubicles.

“Unisex toilet blocks are considered preferable in terms of hygiene, maintenance and pupil behaviour.

“We feel this kind of toilet block, which complies with all national guidelines, is an appropriate solution for children of primary school age.

“We are not aware of any cases of children being reluctant to use the new toilets. On the contrary, the feedback we have received from the vast majority of parents, children and staff has been overwhelmingly positive.

“As an authority we feel it’s important to provide a safe, welcoming environment in our schools for all pupils.”

More: Brighton, Employment, England, gender neutral, primary, school, toilets, Trans, Transgender

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