By Amanda Siskind - NCCJ Contributor
On October 24th, 2013, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter signed into law legislation that requires all new or renovated city-owned buildings to have gender neutral bathrooms. The number and location of these bathrooms is dependent on how the building is used. The new law does not mandate any change in the current bathrooms of any buildings unless they are legislated.
The law has not passed without controversy. The most common concerns are comfort and safety. Having gender neutral bathrooms, it is said, will make many people who are now forced to use the bathroom with people of other genders uncomfortable, and will increase verbal harassment or even physical assault (these hypothetical scenarios often place women as the victims) in these bathrooms.