Suit demands single-sex dorm bathrooms

Dec. 19, 2009 at 8:08 PM

BURLINGTON, Vt., Dec. 19 (UPI) -- A Vermont teenager filed a lawsuit over the lack of single-sex bathrooms at a previously all-female college that went co-ed in 1975.

Jennifer Weiler, 19, says Green Mountain College's failure to designate separate dormitory bathrooms for males and females violates state building codes, the Burlington (Vt.) Free Press reported Saturday.

The Vermont Department of Public Safety, named as defendant in the suit, says code requirements don't apply in existing buildings where no changes were made to plumbing.

Weiler says she requested a single-sex dormitory at the college in Poultney but was assigned to a co-ed floor in a co-ed dormitory.

Weiler's attorney, Pamela Moreau, says a co-ed bathroom is not the same as a "unisex" one, which building codes define as a singe-user bathroom with a lock, the Free Press reported.

"I can't think of a single public building (other than a dorm) that has co-ed bathrooms where men and women co-mingle," Moreau said. "We understand that some people are fine with co-ed bathrooms, but we don't think it should be forced on people who object to them, for whatever reason."

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