Obama signs BABIES act putting changing stations in federal buildings
Finding a changing station is hard enough if you’re a mom, but for dad’s it’s nearly impossible. Not anymore. President Obama signed the BABIES act last week that will bring more changing stations into federal buildings across the United States.
This past summer Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) brought forth the “Bathrooms Accessible in Every Situation (BABIES)” Act through the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. Federal buildings have two years to get the changing stations in place. “Families should never have to deal with inadequate facilities in a publicly-accessible federal building,” Rep. Cicilline said in a statement to Slate. And now they won’t have to.
Thanks, Obama. No really, thank you. During a nasty political season the BABIES act is a nice reminder that our politicians can make the lives of Americans better. While the law won’t put changing stations in every single bathroom across America, it’s a good way to start fixing the problem. Dads have been advocating for changing rooms in men’s restrooms for some time.
Last year celebrity dad Ashton Kutcher petitioned for more changing stations. “Having changing tables in men’s rooms is just a tiny step in the process of rectifying legacy gender discrimination,” he wrote. “Men who are aware of this bias want to participate equally in the child care process, and our society should support that. It’s time to get our hands dirty.” Hell yeah, it is. Tell ’em, Kelso!
The famous dad, who has a daughter and is expecting another child with actress Mila Kunis, took his efforts further by pushing megastores to bring in changing stations to men’s bathrooms. “If Target and Costco take this step, I know that other companies will follow suit and recognize that we should be supporting all parents equally,” Kutcher shared. Both chains responded well to the dad’s petition and either installed family changing rooms and made plans to do so.
It’s a step in the right direction. If we’re really going to recognize the changing landscape of American families, our infrastructure should reflect that. While we’re super pumped that federal buildings, Costcos, and Targets will have more options for dads with poopy diapers, we’ve got plenty of places that still need a makeover.
Because dads change diapers, too.