What makes a public toilet accessible?
Nov 19, 2022
Going to the toilet when you’re out and about should be a pretty simple activity right? Well, that’s not always the case for a lot of disabled people. Standard toilet cubicles are inaccessible for a lot of people for many reasons and that’s why we rely on accessible toilets. But what actually makes them accessible? We thought we’d cover this in this week’s blog… Did you know there are different types of accessible toilets? Here’s a run down:
Example of accessible toilet
1. STANDARD ACCESSIBLE - RADAR LOCKED
This is probably the most popular type of accessible toilet here in the UK with over 9000 available across the country. They are single toilets created for people to access via a key called the Radar Key. This key can be bought from your local council or online. The idea of this is that disabled people can have more chance of accessing a toilet rather than waiting in a queue, as well as having the features listed below in this blog. However, there are differing opinions about this system. Whilst some people find comfort in knowing they have access when needed, some feel this shouldn’t be restricted and free to use for all.
2. CHANGING PLACES
Changing Places Logo
Changing places are a specific type of toilet which is fully kitted out with specific accessible features. The main difference with these are that they include changing tables and hoists. These are fantastic for people who rely on more than one assistant, require a changing table to undress or use a hoist to transfer. There are now over 1700 Changing Places toilets in the UK and we hope that number continues to grow!
Find out more about Changing Places and where you can find them on their website here.
3. AMBULANT TOILET
These are less available but you may find them on the end of a standard row of toilet cubicles. The toilet is usually a little larger and available for people who may require more room such as people who use wheelchairs but they may be able stand or walk. They may also use other mobility aids (e.g. walking sticks).
Each accessible toilet has a mixture of features. But, here at Sociability, we map the below features on our app:
Turning space for a wheelchair
Emergency assistance button/cord
Colour contrasted toilet seat
Touch free waste bin
Clear space under sink (for wheelchair users to fit under)
How to find your local accessible toilets?
We know that planning your day around making sure you can access the toilet can be stressful. That’s why here at Sociability we include the features mentioned above when mapping venues. Download our app on IOS or Android and find out where your local toilets are to make sure your trips are as stress free as possible.
What are the features you look for in an accessible toilet and do you have a favourite one you can always rely on? Let us know in the comments! 👀
If you’d like to check out our app and find local accessible toilets, download Sociability today on IOS or Android. Don’t want to use your phone? You can also use Sociability in your browser too! Keep updated with the latest on Sociability and the team by following us on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter or LinkedIn.