Flushing an Attitude

I was recently lined up in a ladies room that had 3 stalls.  Two were regular, one was wheelchair accessible. 

Lots of women were waiting so the wheelchair stall was being used in sequence.  In came a woman in a wheelchair and the woman who was pushing her rolled her to the front of the line.  She banged on the wheelchair accessible stall door and proceeded to embarrass the woman within.  I spoke up in defence of the woman in the stall!

Let me ask you this: Should that stall remain open 24/7 on the chance that someone who’s differently abled might come along and need it? I say no. I believe that stall is there so that such a person is able to use it when needed but the rest of the time that perch is open for whoever needs it.  The caregiver with the woman in the wheelchair disagreed and felt that stall should be kept pristine and unused, no matter the line-up, until it’s needed by someone for whom it was constructed.  You and I both know that those occasions are few and far between.

We leave handicapped parking spaces for those who fit that definition because they are closer to the door and there are plenty of other places for the rest of us to park.  But in a washroom, when there’s a lineup, we’re talking about a comfort issue.  I agree that we should make way when someone in a wheelchair or walker comes along but until then, I don’t think that throne should sit there unused while people are in need.

What do you think?

2 thoughts on “Flushing an Attitude”

  1. Although I don’t use a wheelchair, I am a person with a disability and have been dealing with these type of questions for 3 decades, so this is merely my humble opinion. Its a matter of attitude and consideration, if a person in a wheelchair or with some other special need enters the washroom, they should be given priority in accessing the handicap facility, its basic common courtesy and if currently occupied, the facility should be cleared at the earliest possible opportunity. Unfortunately, common courtesy doesn’t always flow both ways, for giving priority access doesn’t necessarily mean exclusive access if the facility is otherwise not being used. There are some within the disabled community who firmly believe that using a handicap facility is a sign of disrespect towards the disabled, but then so is going through life with a chip on your shoulder, but in that case, its a sign of disrespect for oneself.

    As a disclaimer, as someone who uses a guide dog, I will occasionally use the handicap facility which allows me to keep my dog out of the way of others and foot traffic so he’s not being tripped over, so I’m guilty as well.

    1. Well using that stall for the very reasons you have makes perfect sense to me! I totally agree that we should make way if someone in a chair or whatever comes in but to leave it empty when it could be used while not inconveniencing anyone who is disabled, is a ridiculous waste, in my opinion.

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