Uninformed Beijing Zoo tourists oblivious to unisex toilets: report

Updated 2017-05-31 10:01:17 Global Times

Unisex public toilets installed in some Beijing parks seem to be unpopular with visitors who may be unaware of the facilities they boast, local media reports.

A Beijing News reporter found that few people were visiting the unisex toilets installed by Beijing Zoo and that many interviewees did not know about the toilets.

The reporter wrote that they found on their Monday visit to the zoo that many parents did not use the unisex toilets - the only ones in the zoo which feature baby changing facilities - for changing their children's diapers, either using a single-sex room or a corridor in public view.

Monday was a public holiday in China, and the zoo was visited by around 30,000 people.

In the ten minutes that the reporter stood outside one unisex toilet, only two parents took their children to use the facility. "I have no idea what the unisex toilet is for. The door was closed," one visiting mother told the reporter.

The zoo has built six unisex toilets as part of the National Tourism Administration's (NTA) effort to improve tourism facilities and services across China.

The NTA said in February that the country's 5A-class scenic spots should install gender-neutral bathrooms, and announced plans to build 604 unisex toilets across China. The NTA's standards for these toilets stipulate that they must offer baby changing facilities. According to the NTA, hygiene problems, long queues and poor facilities are common in many scenic spots' toilets.

Over new 52,000 public toilets have been built all over China from 2015 to the end of April 2017, according to NTA data cited by the Xinhua News Agency.

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