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New York City Mayor Signs Law Making All Single-Occupancy Bathrooms Gender Neutral

genderA person’s trustworthiness is determined in only a tenth of a second. But according to some laws in states all over the nation, a transgender individual is not able to be trusted enough to go to the bathroom corresponding with the gender they identify with. However, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is aiming to fix that.

Earlier this week, de Blasio signed legislation that requires all single-occupancy bathrooms throughout the city to be made available to all genders. The law passed in the City Council with a landslide majority of 47-2 last week.

According to the new law, businesses will have to post signs on every bathroom door stating the new rules. The rule goes into effect four months from now, and all signs must be up by January 1, 2017.

Supporters of this bill hope that this gender-inclusive mandate will send a message to the states around the nation that are discriminating against transgender people.

In his statement, as reported on The Wall Street Journal, de Blasio said, “With this bill, we take yet another step toward becoming a place where all can live with dignity, free from fear and free from judgment.”

De Blasio’s administration has also started a $265,000 media campaign to highlight the new bathroom signs and rules in the city. The sign posted will either say “all-gender restroom,” or “inclusive.”

Passing this law has launched de Blasio right into the national debate over transgender bathroom rights. Some opposing members of the New York City business community have described the bill as “onerous.”

But as De Blasio explained, this bill is meant not only for transgender individuals to feel comfortable, but it could benefit women who wait in long bathroom lines along with parents who are tending to children of the opposite sex.

Similar legislation has been passed in other large cities nationwide, including Philadelphia, PA; Washington, D.C.; and Austin, TX.