Action stations!

Practical advice before I enter the lion’s den. The issue of my using the women’s changing facility was left in limbo on Saturday. The acting manager was pretty sympathetic, but the entire issue is well above her pay grade.

So tomorrow, I need to start the process of talking to the centre officially.

I shall be relying on the Equality Act (as opposed to the GRA). I shall say absolutely no to any suggestion I go along with a compromise and use the disabled facilities.. Somewhere along the way, I will throw in a question about what the problem is anyway, since a) no-one much seems to get naked in the area in question and b) dads regularly take their daughters into the male changing area.

It may be that the management just roll, and it turns into a discussion of how we accommodate myself. If they don’t…if they start um’ing and ah’ing, I shall boot it on to the EHRC and GIRES straight away.

Beyond that, I am more than willing to attend any sort of meeting with the “concerned” parents, as well as to help the centre with its diversity notification which, as I think I mentioned before, possibly does not include trans in its categories.

Anyone got any further thoughts.

BTW…it might be relevant that although this is a Council property, it is possibly leased out to a private health club to run.



3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Lucy Melford said,

    Jane, I’ve been following this. I think you’re absolutely right not to compromise. The real issues must come out, so that real solutions are put in place. Other local persons will benefit if you sort this out.

    What a horrible experience to have your way barred and violence threatened! In front of your little son too. Thankfully not all men are like that, but attitudes can be pretty mindless and knee-jerk on the spur of the moment. I thought you showed admirable resiliance and presence of mind.

    Leisure centres are commonly run for local authorities by big leisure firms. In Sussex it’s Freedom Leisure. I’ve not yet had problems with them. You might get some useful model rules and regulations
    – good or dodgy – from their website.

    Good luck!


  2. 2

    spirifer said,

    Jane, no doubt you’ve already read this guidance from the EHRC, specifically relating to changing facilities at leisure centres/swimming pools. But if not, the issue of changing facilities is specifically addressed.

  3. 3

    spirifer said,

    “The business must also avoid discriminating against transsexual people. Transsexual people should be treated as belonging to the sex in which they present (as opposed to the physical sex they were born with) unless the business can objectively justify treating them differently, taking into account the needs and wishes of everyone involved. Different treatment in this situation will rarely be justified.”

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