All single-stall washrooms at Vancouver City Hall now have signs that read “Trans People Welcome,” as part of the Supporting Trans Equality and an Inclusive Vancouver Plan.
The signs will also be added to other buildings owned by the City over the next few months, to increase inclusivity of all genders and minimize the barriers that transgender people face.
Along with the extra signs on the single-stall washrooms, multi-stall washrooms have had their male and female symbols replaced with the words “Men” or “Women.”
In a statement, Jag Sandhu, communications representative for the City of Vancouver, explained the motivation behind the sign changes.
“Many trans*, gender variant and two-spirit individuals are at higher risk for harassment or assault when accessing gender-segregated spaces,” said Sandhu.
“As a result, they are less likely to use such facilities in order to avoid possible negative confrontations and experiences.”
The Supporting Trans Equality and an Inclusive Vancouver Plan is a motion that “underscores the City’s strong commitment to supporting the equality and human rights of the LGBTTQ community and all residents,” according to a 2016 administrative report.
“Everyone has the right to safe and inclusive washroom facilities. This change is another step forward towards ensuring equality and inclusion for all,” said City Manager Sadhu Johnston in the release.
“This updated signage aims to help trans*, gender variant and two-spirit individuals feel safer accessing the washroom facility they most identify with.”
*The City of Vancouver defines trans*(with asterisk) as “an inclusive umbrella term used to refer to communities and individuals with gender identities and/or expression not matching gender binary stereotypes.”