MU gender neutral bathrooms map takes side on statewide issue

1 year 10 months 4 days ago Thursday, October 15 2015 Oct 15, 2015 Thursday, October 15, 2015 6:51:00 PM CDT October 15, 2015 in News
By: Ashley Holt, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - MU's Missouri Student Association, or MSA, released a Gender Neutral Bathroom's map in early September, in an effort to make all students, regardless of their gender identity, feel safe.

The effort was spearheaded by MSA President Payton Head, who said he got the idea from a friend who identifies as transgender, and is also an MU student. 

"The idea of a map was created with the intention of letting students know a place where they can feel safe is," Head said. "We all pay money, you know, we all are walking around this campus, we all are contributing to the state in some way or another, and we have the right to feel safe and included on this campus."

"I feel pretty uncomfortable and unsafe in a lot of the men's bathrooms," said Cole Young, an MU sophomore who only uses gender neutral bathrooms.

He said, if he can't find one, then he would prefer to wait. 

"I've been late to class, I've been late to work, I've gone halfway across campus just to use a bathroom that I feel comfortable in," Young said.

He said the importance of having gender neutral bathrooms isn't to necessarily change the physical bathrooms, but the language in order to make it more acceptable of all gender identities.

"All gender bathrooms mean anyone: man, woman, non-binary. Because there's more than just two genders," Young said.

Young, who often does panels to educate the community on transgender issues and discussions, explained that there is a "trans-umbrella." It includes "binary trans" people who identify as either a transgender man or a transgender woman. And then there are people who don't feel that they belong to a gender. They either feel somewhere in between male and female, or completely outside of both. Those individuals are referred to as "non-binary."

Both Head and Young haven't found that there's been local backlash against the new map; however, Missouri legislator Jeff Pogue, R-Salem, created two bills in March of 2015 that went completely against this effort, and many like it around the state. 

House Bill 1338 stated, "All public restrooms, other than single occupancy public restrooms, shall be designated as gender-divided restrooms." 

While House Bill 1339 stated, "No state revenues shall be appropriated to or extended upon any entity that adopts or implements any project, program, or policy that creates or attempts to create a gender-neutral environment in a previously gender-divided environment..." 

Neither bill passed, but Head is open to discuss any bills similar to them.

"If the state is not behind it, then you need to get on board. Because in the next 20 years, 25 years, the students who are sitting right here... will be the ones behind the desks, making these decisions," Head said.

"I myself believe we're living in a time where we're sacrificing our morals and traditions just to be politically correct," said Skyler Roundtree, the president of the Mizzou Republicans. "A little bit of what his legislation was trying to do was to prevent something more extreme from happening in the future."

However, Young said that regardless of who's against it, everyone deserves to feel safe about something as simple as using the bathroom. 

"It's not exactly fair for you to be able to use the bathroom and say, ‘well I don't think you should be able to have a safe space, but I also don't think you should be in my bathroom. Because where would we go,'" Young said.

KOMU 8 News reached out to Pogue to get his perspective on the maps, and he didn't wish to comment. He said he isn't sure if he'll pursue the same bills, or any similar to it, next session.

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - The incoming freshmen at Blair Oaks High School will become the first class to not have a... More >>
4 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 8:59:00 PM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – Angela Speck, the director of astronomy at the University of Missouri, gave a presentation titled, "Doing Science in... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 4:36:00 PM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
PIKE COUNTY, Mo. - A man was charged with first degree murder and armed criminal action after Alexander Koch died... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 4:32:00 PM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - With mid-Missouri preparing for the upcoming eclipse on Monday, Laws Observatory played host to an event made to... More >>
9 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 3:18:00 PM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A former school bus driver in eastern Missouri has been sentenced to 20 years in prison... More >>
11 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 1:58:58 PM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - With the eclipse nearly here, crews in Jefferson City were busy preparing for festivities Saturday. On... More >>
11 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 1:19:00 PM CDT August 19, 2017 in Eclipse Planning
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Confederate memorial in Kansas City was vandalized with graffiti overnight. Local media show someone... More >>
12 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 12:41:00 PM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri's child abuse hotline now accepts out-of-state calls. First lady Sheena Greitens said she learned... More >>
14 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 11:06:17 AM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – The University of Missouri will host and sponsor numerous events this weekend leading up to Monday’s total solar... More >>
14 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 10:58:00 AM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
CHAFFEE (AP) — A southeast Missouri man is facing murder conspiracy charges for allegedly trying to hire a hit man... More >>
14 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 10:55:54 AM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — In towns and cities along the path of the solar eclipse, some school districts are seizing... More >>
14 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 10:47:03 AM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Firefighters will be hitting the street with their boots in their hands. Columbia Fire Department will... More >>
20 hours ago Saturday, August 19 2017 Aug 19, 2017 Saturday, August 19, 2017 5:00:00 AM CDT August 19, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Helias Catholic High School won’t have to borrow Jefferson City High School’s stadium anymore after it opened... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 18 2017 Aug 18, 2017 Friday, August 18, 2017 7:18:00 PM CDT August 18, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri State Parks officials say they can't verify that solar eclipse glasses the agency sold meet... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 18 2017 Aug 18, 2017 Friday, August 18, 2017 6:48:40 PM CDT August 18, 2017 in Eclipse Events
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Attorneys for a Missouri man convicted of killing a former St. Louis Post-Dispatch reporter 19 years... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 18 2017 Aug 18, 2017 Friday, August 18, 2017 6:30:00 PM CDT August 18, 2017 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - Seth MacVittie, 36, of Fulton, is under investigation of escape from the Callaway County Jail Friday. ... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 18 2017 Aug 18, 2017 Friday, August 18, 2017 6:07:00 PM CDT August 18, 2017 in News
PETTIS COUNTY - The man shot and killed at a trailer park outside the Sedalia city limits Thursday afternoon has... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 18 2017 Aug 18, 2017 Friday, August 18, 2017 5:12:00 PM CDT August 18, 2017 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - UPDATE: The suspect is now in custody and was processed in the Boone County Jail Friday evening. ... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 18 2017 Aug 18, 2017 Friday, August 18, 2017 4:16:00 PM CDT August 18, 2017 in Top Stories
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 75°
1am 71°
2am 70°
3am 69°
4am 69°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

1:02a
Open House NYC
1:30a
The Insider
2:00a
Paid Program
12:00a
Canvas
2:00a
Elementary
3:00a
Paid Program

Tonight's Schedule

6:00p
Gymnastics
8:00p
American Ninja Warrior
6:00p
Cliffhanger
8:00p
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld