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Gender neutral toilets could be put in county’s schools to help trans children

Unisex Bathroom sign with both male and female symbols
Schools could follow guidance supporting ‘toilets for everyone’ (Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Unisex toilets could soon be installed in schools across East Sussex to help transgender pupils feel more comfortable.

It follows a consultation with trans children which revealed that many will choose gender-neutral toilets ‘for fear of bullying or harassment’.

Single sex loos can also cause issues for young people who identify as non-binary, according to feedback.

Schools in East Sussex are expected to follow new guidance issued in Brighton and Hove’s Trans Inclusion Toolkit, which calls for ‘toilets for everyone’.

The guidance says educational settings ‘should provide pupils and students with a mixture of access to toilets’.

It suggests this should include ‘blocks of ceiling cubicle toilets that can be used by all, with bins for menstrual products in each cubicle’.

The toolkit also includes guidance on issues such as mixed sports, the use of gendered language and the right for pupils to dress in either male or female uniform.

Trans children will often choose gender neutral toilets ‘for fear of bullying or harassment’ (Picture: AFP/Getty Images)

Chairwoman of Brighton’s Children, Young People and Skills Committee, Councillor Hannah Clare, said: ‘This is an important element of work to ensure all pupils in our city’s schools feel safe and supported.

‘Supporting trans children is just one vital part of continued efforts to tackle any form of discrimination.

‘We want all pupils to feel comfortable in their own skin so they can make the most of all that education offers and flourish into being the very best version of themselves.

‘Many of our schools are already working to ensure that their environment and curriculum celebrates all children and their families.

‘This Toolkit provides guidance on how to ensure trans members of the community feel equally welcome, represented and safe in our city.’

The guidance also attempts to explain the difference between biological sex and gender identity.

It says biological sex refers to chromosomes, genitalia and hormones which make up a person’s physical anatomy.

Gender identity concerns how a person feels and chooses to express themself.

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