As co-chairs of the Changing Places Consortium we are excited to share the news that Paula Sherriff MP is putting forward a Ten Minute Rule Bill in the House of Commons this Wednesday around access to Changing Places toilets. This is a fantastic opportunity to raise the profile of the campaign for Changing Places within Parliament.
About Changing Places toilets
Over 250,000 people across the UK, including many people living with muscle wasting conditions, cannot use standard accessible toilets as they require more space and additional equipment. Instead, they need Changing Places toilets which provide a bench, hoist, peninsular toilet and more space. Without access to Changing Places toilets thousands of people are faced with a choice between not going out, restricting outings or having to use inappropriate toilet facilities. For some, this can mean being changed on a toilet floor. We believe everyone should be able to access a toilet that meets their needs and provides them with the comfort and dignity they deserve. That is why Muscular Dystrophy UK are proud to be co-chairs of the Consortium.
What is the Bill about?
This Bill was sparked by Paula Sherriff MP meeting Changing Places toilet campaigner Lorna Fillingham earlier this year when Lorna handed in her petition which has over 54,000 supporters. Following this, Paula Sherriff contacted us to get more information about the campaign. We gave a detailed briefing about the Changing Places toilet campaign and highlighted the minimum changes we want to see to existing standards and regulations to make Changing Places toilets mandatory in all large new builds This will form the key ask of the Bill.
Following Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday, Paula Sherriff will have ten minutes to speak and present her case for the Bill. Whilst a Ten Minute Rule Bill is unlikely to bring change to legislation on its own, it is a great opportunity to raise the issue of Changing Places in Parliament and will hopefully pave the way for future change. In the meantime we will continue to work with the Consortium and campaigners to push for the necessary changes to legislation to make sure that Changing Places toilets become common place across the UK.