LONG BEACH (CBSLA.com) — Dozens of fathers Friday gathered in support of the “Potty Parity for Parents Act,” which would establish equal access to baby changing stations in public facilities.
Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Huntington Park/Long Beach) was joined by dads at 11:30 a.m. at the Aquarium of the Pacific, 100 Aquarium Way in Long Beach, which already has baby-changing stations in the men’s and women’s restrooms.
The news conference was held in support of Lara’s bill SB1350, which would ensure that public facilities in California equipped with baby changing stations are equally available to men and women.
The Potty Parity for Parents Act would require a baby changing station to be installed in the men’s restroom if one is being installed in the women’s restroom, or require a diaper changing station to be included in a family restroom that is available to both men and women.
Stay-at-home dad Trevor Mulligan was at the aquarium with his two young sons and said he’s got “the greatest job in the world.”
He said things get challenging when nature calls.
Mulligan said he finds diaper changing stations hard to come by.
“My wife says 99 percent of [women’s restrooms] have it,” but that percentage goes way down for men’s bathrooms.
He said if he can’t find a place to change his youngest son’s diaper then he tries to pick the most visible location possible “to make a point to the owners of the establishment that, look, I can’t do it in the bathroom, I’m going to do it right here. You don’t want me to do it right here? Put a baby changing station in there and we’ll take care of it there.”
Alex Salemon takes his son, Connor, back to the car when he needs a diaper change, but it can be quite inconvenient.
“You’re in the middle of shopping, your cart is half full, and then he needs a diaper change,” dad Alex Salemon said. “You kind of have to stop everything and go back to the car.”
Salemon said the problem is solved when his wife is with him, since she often can access a changing table in the women’s restroom.
Dads at the rally said it’s 2014 and men’s and women’s equality in diaper changing options should be a given. They said the changes called for in the “Potty Parity for Parents Act” are just common sense.