Health & Wellbeing Month continues here with a guest blog from Jen Slater at Around the Toilet:
Everyone has a toilet story. Sometimes they’re funny, told amongst friends and interspersed with laughter from behind coy hands, smiles and blushing faces, and sometimes they’re whispered or guiltily divulged in secrecy or shame. Sometimes they’re spoken casually, or proudly, without deliberation. But often they’re not told at all. Through our research in Around the Toilet, we’ve become increasingly convinced that these stories and experiences are important.
Our work on Around the Toilet started with a focus on different ways of thinking about ‘accessibility’ and exclusion in public space. We argued that current ways of thinking about toilet access are too narrow and generic. Toilet access requires consideration of so many things: mental health, faith, gender, sexuality, race, disability, class, homelessness, workplace and labour rights, fatness, age, parenting, and much more. Toilets need to be designed and used with creativity, diversity and openness, reflecting the bodies, identities and requirements of the people who use them. Toilets need to be better!
Through our work, we’ve created a number of resources – from those sharing stories and musings on the toilet, such as our recent zine, Lift The Lid – to those which aim to help design professionals rethink the toilet, such as The Toilet Toolkit (www.toilettoolkit.co.uk). Both these recourse, plus many more, are linked from our project blog at www.aroundthetoilet.com and free for anyone to use (we’d love to know how you use them!). Also keep an eye out for a short animation The Toilet. which will be released later this month and a project report outlining more detailed findings.
Follow us on Twitter @cctoilettalk and join the conversation at #cctoilettalk