Author Topic: Using the stall for disabled people  (Read 40957 times)

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rashea

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #45 on: March 04, 2012, 07:52:50 PM »
Claire, the rude person was the one in the wheelchair. She should have either knocked on the door to ask if you would be much longer, because she needed the only stall available to her, or just asked through the door. When she started yelling, she was nothing but rude. You didn't owe her any explanation and didn't need to offer one.

I think the woman was rude in the way she handled it but I understand why she was upset if it was the only accessible stall. If it was I think you should have avoided using it if you were going to be abnormally long. It's incredibly frustrating to have to ask someone to get out of a stall after you've been waiting for more than 5 minutes.
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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #46 on: March 04, 2012, 07:59:43 PM »
Claire, the rude person was the one in the wheelchair. She should have either knocked on the door to ask if you would be much longer, because she needed the only stall available to her, or just asked through the door. When she started yelling, she was nothing but rude. You didn't owe her any explanation and didn't need to offer one.

I think the woman was rude in the way she handled it but I understand why she was upset if it was the only accessible stall. If it was I think you should have avoided using it if you were going to be abnormally long. It's incredibly frustrating to have to ask someone to get out of a stall after you've been waiting for more than 5 minutes.

Who is to say what constitutes abnormally long, though?  I have IBS, sometimes a trip to the restroom is not more than 2 minutes, sometimes it takes 10; I can't control what my body asks of me.  What if the person in the accessible stall was handicapped and needed to take that long?  The lady wouldn't have been right then and she isn't right in Claire's instance, either (I am talking about understanding why she was upset).  She couldn't have known Claire wasn't handicapped and needed to take that long, so her being upset isn't really justified.  Annoyed that she has to wait, sure, because I don't like waiting when there is a line even if it isn't due to IBS, but that upset?  Nope, I don't give it a pass. 
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rashea

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #47 on: March 05, 2012, 09:25:01 AM »
Claire, the rude person was the one in the wheelchair. She should have either knocked on the door to ask if you would be much longer, because she needed the only stall available to her, or just asked through the door. When she started yelling, she was nothing but rude. You didn't owe her any explanation and didn't need to offer one.

I think the woman was rude in the way she handled it but I understand why she was upset if it was the only accessible stall. If it was I think you should have avoided using it if you were going to be abnormally long. It's incredibly frustrating to have to ask someone to get out of a stall after you've been waiting for more than 5 minutes.

Who is to say what constitutes abnormally long, though?  I have IBS, sometimes a trip to the restroom is not more than 2 minutes, sometimes it takes 10; I can't control what my body asks of me.  What if the person in the accessible stall was handicapped and needed to take that long?  The lady wouldn't have been right then and she isn't right in Claire's instance, either (I am talking about understanding why she was upset).  She couldn't have known Claire wasn't handicapped and needed to take that long, so her being upset isn't really justified.  Annoyed that she has to wait, sure, because I don't like waiting when there is a line even if it isn't due to IBS, but that upset?  Nope, I don't give it a pass.

I'm not giving her behavior a pass. But I have waiting more than 15 minutes for the one accessible bathroom in an airport bathroom (small airport and this was the only one past the checkpoint). I was upset, and was pretty well convinced the person in there wasn't disabled (I could see her walking around and changing clothes and such under the door).

The issue is that if there is a line for the non-accessible stalls and one person takes 15 minutes, it slows people up. But most of the time there are multiple stalls, so while it may take you 5 minutes to get to a stall instead of 3, you aren't waiting that whole time. When there is only one accessible stall, you have to wait that whole time. So I do consider it more rude to be in that stall for a long period of time.

Let's say it is due to IBS. And you know you have it and it could be a while. Then choose the non-accessible stall and avoid holding a person with a disability up for that time.

Again, she handled it badly. But I don't think it was reasonable for Claire to have taken the only accessible stall either.
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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #48 on: March 17, 2012, 09:33:56 PM »
I just realized something kind of strange about the dance studio where I work out. There are larger stalls which I assume are for wheelchair access and where installed in compliance with disability laws. I have occasionally used the women's special stall for changing out of my sweaty clothes (when I don't feel like busting a kneecap on the toilet paper holder stepping out of my pants :P) but I use the regular stalls to go to the bathroom. However I just realized that the studio is on the 2nd floor of the building... and the only way to get there is the stairs. No ramp.  :o :o
I think some understanding and leeway is in order when bodily functions that we have limited control over are involved. I can understand not being allowed to park in handicapped spots, and deferring on the bus when someone gets on who needs the special seat or the seat close to the front. On the other hand, when you have to go you have to go - if there is a perfectly functional empty stall sitting there and no handicapped person in sight then I'm not going to risk soiling myself on the off chance that one will come along. I'd try to be done in a timely manner (inasmuch as we ever have control over that sort of thing) but I'd still use it.
IMHO, no one has a right to judge who should or shouldn't be using the special stall, but anyone who does use it needs to do so responsibly.
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VorFemme

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #49 on: March 18, 2012, 10:16:16 AM »
Fast food place yesterday - NO ONE was using the handicapped stall in the lady's room - there was fluid around the base of it and we were all in pants - no one wanted to risk driving for hours wearing pants with *unknown fluid* on the pants legs.............even if it was water, it was water from around the base of a toilet!

VorGuy changed clothes in a toilet once and got spots of fluid on his pants legs...........it turned out to be bleach - because there were white spots on his khaki pants after I washed them that night.  He doesn't change clothes in fast food bathroom stalls any more........(it was a bus trip - no other place to change at the time).
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darkprincess

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #50 on: April 09, 2012, 02:08:57 PM »
One time I needed to do a diaper change with DD. The only changing table was in the handicapped stall and I now that I am pregnant again I am noticing this is even more common. I used the stall for the intended purpose-the changing table on the wall. When I got out I was yelled at by someone needing that particular stall.

At the time I apologized and was very embarrased, and then later was annoyed that I apoligized and was embarrased for doing exactly what I was supposed to do. When new DD is born I will need to practice some sort of statement that the person should complain to the manager if they have a problem with where they put the changing table.

rashea

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #51 on: April 09, 2012, 02:15:08 PM »
One time I needed to do a diaper change with DD. The only changing table was in the handicapped stall and I now that I am pregnant again I am noticing this is even more common. I used the stall for the intended purpose-the changing table on the wall. When I got out I was yelled at by someone needing that particular stall.

At the time I apologized and was very embarrased, and then later was annoyed that I apoligized and was embarrased for doing exactly what I was supposed to do. When new DD is born I will need to practice some sort of statement that the person should complain to the manager if they have a problem with where they put the changing table.

I think you say, "This stall is also the only changing table. I realize it means you have to wait longer, but I would encourage you to discuss that issue with management."
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Piratelvr1121

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #52 on: April 09, 2012, 02:34:22 PM »
I tend to avoid using them, but sometimes I just can't. I'm not disabled, but if I go somewhere alone with my baby, I will take the stroller with me into the disabled stall because it's the only one big enough to fit myself and the stroller and I'm sure as heck not going to leave him alone outside the stall. 

And sometimes the disabled stall is where they put the changing table for infants so I have to use it for that reason.  So if anyone complained about my using it, I'd just point to the babe and perhaps point out that while it's made accessible for the handicapped, it's also set up to be used by those with small children.
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camlan

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #53 on: April 09, 2012, 02:56:47 PM »
At one university I attended, the library building had originally had one ladies' room per floor, three regular stalls in each restroom. The building was built at a time when the new handicapped accessible requirements were known, but not yet law. So someone made a choice not to incorporate the new regulations, even though they would be law in a year. This was legal at the time.

When they had to alter the stalls to provide handicapped access a few years after the building was finished, they choose the easiest, cheapest way to do it. They combined two of the stalls and a part of the third into one, to make one regulation-sized handicapped accessible stall. The remaining regular stall? It looked normal on the outside, but one wall angled backwards into the stall, to give enough room in the handicapped stall. The rear of the stall was only a couple of inches wider than the toilet itself. They hadn't wanted to have to move any of the plumbing lines, so they kept the footprint of the old toilets and just moved the stall walls around them.

Everyone used the handicapped stall. It was the only one people could get into and turn around in. And if you had a winter coat and a backpack full of books, you and your belongings could not fit in the stall.

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MellowedOne

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #54 on: April 10, 2012, 07:45:22 AM »
Bathroom stalls are made to be handicapped “accessible” and not as private stalls designated for handicapped only.  In this respect, they differ from specially designated parking spots, which by law are only for the use of individuals who qualify for their usage.

AliciaLynette

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #55 on: April 10, 2012, 08:07:55 AM »
I tend to avoid using them, but sometimes I just can't. I'm not disabled, but if I go somewhere alone with my baby, I will take the stroller with me into the disabled stall because it's the only one big enough to fit myself and the stroller and I'm sure as heck not going to leave him alone outside the stall. 

And sometimes the disabled stall is where they put the changing table for infants so I have to use it for that reason.  So if anyone complained about my using it, I'd just point to the babe and perhaps point out that while it's made accessible for the handicapped, it's also set up to be used by those with small children.

I do this, mainly because round here I would expect items to be taken from the pushchair (when LilOne was a few months old, there were several reports of shopping/baby items going missing from pushchairs while the parents were in the cubicle with the pushchair right outside.  Thankfully no babies went missing like that, but I still worry!).  However, I do make sure that I only use disabled stalls if I have no other option, i.e. LilOne needs changing and the disabled stall is also baby-changing, or if I have nobody who can look after the pushchair & LilOne while I go to the loo.

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Twik

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #56 on: April 13, 2012, 10:47:28 AM »
Bathroom stalls are made to be handicapped “accessible” and not as private stalls designated for handicapped only.  In this respect, they differ from specially designated parking spots, which by law are only for the use of individuals who qualify for their usage.

I think this is a very good point to remember.
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rashea

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #57 on: April 13, 2012, 11:39:13 AM »
Bathroom stalls are made to be handicapped “accessible” and not as private stalls designated for handicapped only.  In this respect, they differ from specially designated parking spots, which by law are only for the use of individuals who qualify for their usage.

I think this is a very good point to remember.

True, but I would still argue that it is rude to tie up any resource for an unusual amount of time, especially when you can choose to use a similar but not identical resource, but a segment of the population cannot make that same choice.

I would feel it was rude to spend a long time in a single toilet restroom as well if you could avoid it. Then you would be keeping all women (assuming you're using the women's room of course) from using the bathroom. I do tend to be more careful of how long I'm in one of those rooms. This isn't' different to me.
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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #58 on: April 13, 2012, 12:43:32 PM »
....I would still argue that it is rude to tie up any resource for an unusual amount of time, especially when you can choose to use a similar but not identical resource, but a segment of the population cannot make that same choice.

I would feel it was rude to spend a long time in a single toilet restroom as well if you could avoid it. Then you would be keeping all women (assuming you're using the women's room of course) from using the bathroom. I do tend to be more careful of how long I'm in one of those rooms. This isn't' different to me.

I understand where you're coming from, but I really feel like most women are eager to get in, take care of business, and get out again as soon as is humanly possible.  At least, that's my feeling about public restrooms   :)

Sometimes, though, people have to occupy a stall for a while.  I would be interested in knowing how you determine if someone's situation was avoidable? 


mrkitty

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Re: Using the stall for disabled people
« Reply #59 on: April 13, 2012, 12:50:00 PM »
I think it is perfectly appropriate to use the disabled stall if it's free. It's the same thing with hotel rooms with disabled access/modified showers. Hotels don't assign those rooms only to disabled people. I once stayed in a hotel that wasn't even occupied close to capacity and didn't make any kind of room request. They just assigned me the disabled room for no particular reason. I see no problem with it if it is available.

Even if a disabled person came in while you were using the disabled access bathroom stall, it's no different than a regular person waiting for a regular stall because they're all occupied. Everyone has to wait their turn - no matter their circumstances in life. My father, MHRIP, was disabled shortly before his death, and was wheelchair bound briefly. He never complained about waiting for a disabled stall, even though sometimes he would need to wait a minute. Those stalls are there to be able to accommodate people with special needs; however, they are not there solely to cater to them. My father would have been offended to be given "special" treatment simply because he was sick; he was still himself; he didn't need special treatment, just access to modified facilities. Access is access, even if one has to wait for a minute. There's no law that says that ADA compliant restrooms can only be used by those with disabilities.

Or, consider this. A lot of public and government buildings have disabled-access door buttons that one pushes to get the swinging door to open automatically. A lot of non-disabled people us it, especially at stores and libraries, when people have their hands full with items they've bought or checked out. And, sometimes people are just lazy and like to use the button instead of taking a little bit of effort to push open the door. That is not illegal. Imagine if the only entrance to a building had that disabled access feature. Would non-disabled people be dis-allowed from entering the building? Of course not! That would be silly. All it means when there are disabled-access facilities is that thank goodness disabled people can use them, too. It does not by any means indicate that non-disabled people can't use them.

There IS a law about parking spaces, though. And to use those, the disabled have to have a placard supplied by the authorities, and it is illegal to use one that isn't yours. I see no requirement about bringing one's placard/license to the restroom and hanging it on the door while one is using it. Until that day comes, if it ever does, feel free to use ADA compliant facilities where it is legal to do so, is my opinion.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2012, 03:06:45 PM by mrkitty »
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