About the Author
Mark Richardson is a multimedia journalist, editor and writer who has worked in digital, print and broadcast media for three decades. He is a nationally recognized editor and reporter who has covered government, politics and the environment. A journalism graduate from the University of Texas at Austin, he was recently awarded a Foundation for Investigative Journalism grant and has three Associated Press Managing Editors awards for excellence in reporting.
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Gender-neutral bathroom signs required
Austin has adopted regulations requiring all businesses to install gender-neutral signs for single-user public restrooms, including restrooms accessible only to employees. Officials say the adoption of these new regulations are the result of a national campaign by the National Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer/Questioning organization to bring attention to gendered restroom facilities, “which can present uncomfortable and dangerous situations for the gender nonconforming community.” City officials say a single-user restroom is one whose primary entry door is lockable and that is available for use by an individual with or without assistance. Enforcement of the ordinance will be on a complaint basis. Persons wishing to report noncompliance by a business may call 3-1-1 to file a formal complaint. Violators could be subject to a Class C misdemeanor.
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