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Unisex Toilets in Schools – The New LGBT Battleground?

The humble toilet; a place of privacy, a place of personal grooming, and a place to relieve yourself. Well, not for many schools inspired by the LGBT movement. A number of schools that have undergone new build programmes or are planning to do so in the future are taking the opportunity to remove their segregated male and female toilets and replace them with ‘unisex toilets’. The usual form of these toilets is not literally a communal bathroom shared by both sexes – that would be too outrageous for the majority of parents. The usual form is a communal wash-basin area which is not an enclosed room and is largely visible to the main corridor of the school. The toilet cubicles themselves are fully enclosed from the ceiling to the floor but can be used by either gender.

The reasons for this change are often couched by schools in terms of cost savings exercises and improvements to behaviour. Of course the floor space needed for a ‘unisex toilet’ is considerably lower than the floor space required for two separate, enclosed toilets. It is claimed that having a wash-basin area visible to the corridor will reduce incidents of bullying and vandalism by virtue of staff walking past in the corridors. It is also claimed that forcing girls to share facilities with the generally more rowdy and messy boys will encourage boys to be cleaner and better behaved. But one of the main drivers, if not the main driver, is the relentless onslaught of the LGBT movement in schools to impose their outlook on sexuality on the rest of the community. They consider that having segregated toilets clearly demarked as male or female creates anxiety for transgender students who do not want to be assigned to the sex they were born as. The LGBT movement is not even prepared to tolerate separate male, female, and ‘unisex toilets’ for the fear that embarrassment will be caused to transgender students who are seen walking into the ‘unisex toilets’.

The argument that ‘unisex toilets’ improve behaviour in schools is a very lazy one. Putting boys next to girls does not automatically improve their behaviour and cleanliness. All it does is lead girls to feel more vulnerable and intimidated. If schools have a problem with vandalism or bullying in segregated toilets it is their responsibility to deal with it as it is their responsibility to deal with it in any part of the school through an effective behaviour policy supported by sanctions and rewards. CCTV cameras can be positioned to monitor behaviour around the wash basin areas of segregated toilets and regular cleaning of toilets should occur throughout the day where cleaners can report problems and CCTV images can be checked for culprits of vandalism. If schools have an effective anti-bullying policy all students will know who to talk to if they are targeted in an enclosed segregated toilet. The idea that having a unisex wash basin area open to the corridor that can be effectively supervised by staff casually walking pass from time to time and peering over is naïve.

The reality is that little thought has been given to the well-being of children when considering this proposal. The founder of Childline, Esther Rantzen, described the proposals as a ‘recipe for disaster’ and stated unequivocally, ‘Unisex toilets in schools should be avoided at all costs’.[1] Children in secondary schools in particular are often extremely self-conscious over the changes their bodies are going through during puberty. Menstruating girls in particular need their privacy and the last thing they need is to feel fear and anxiety in heading towards a shared facility. Consider an 11 year old girl having to negotiate her way past a group of strapping 16 year old lads in full swing with their bad language and banter. Imagine the humiliation she would feel if she needs to deal with some facial blemish like acne or readjust her blouse at the mixed wash basin. Now consider an 11 year old boy dying to relieve himself and finding a group of cackling 16 year old girls applying make-up and resenting his presence. In both cases there are likely to be large numbers of boys and particularly girls who refuse to use the shared facility and would rather wait until they reach home. This will be extremely unhealthy for them, as well as leading to lack of concentration in class and greatly reduced participation in after school activities. We have not even begun to discuss how ‘unisex toilets’ completely ignore the need of Muslim women to wash before the prayer and remove their covering. They will now be faced with the intolerable choice of exposing themselves to the opposite gender in clear contradiction with their faith or, worse still, abandoning the prayer, again in clear contradiction with their faith. The problems it creates are numerous and the only perceived benefit is that the extremely rare case of a student who is struggling to come to terms with their sex or gender will no longer have to feel the slight unease before walking into a segregated toilet.

The segregated toilet is one of the last places in our society where the natural desire for certain types of separation of men and women is still tolerated. It allows men and women to relieve themselves in comfort without the embarrassment of having to share a facility with the opposite sex. At the heart of this proposal is a strong desire by the LGBT movement to blur the lines between the sexes and remove any sense of mysticism which exists about the opposite sex. They want to blur the distinction between sex and gender, and transform sex into a spectrum rather than its binary division and what better place to start than the young, impressionable minds of our children?

It is the responsibility of every parent to take an active interest in the conduct of their school and vehemently oppose unisex toilets. Parents should join forces with other parents and raise their objections directly with the Headteacher. This is an issue which pans across different groups in society: men and women who want to preserve their dignity; different religious groups with a faith or value-based objection; people who see these proposals as morally objectionable and an attack on the social fabric of society; or just people who feel that some in the LGBT movement are imposing their views on sexuality in an aggressive, uncompromising manner.

Source: www.islam21c.com


[1] http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/unisex-toilets-in-schools-should-be-avoided-at-all-costs-9206081.html

About Ustadh Abu Haneefah Sohail

Abu Haneefah is an educationalist and student of knowledge. He has worked extensively in community projects in the UK. He holds regular study circles on reflections on the Qur'ān and his field of expertise is the tarbiyya of young people.


  1. As a teacher ,I would like to respond to the lady who stated that we need to be concerned about more pressing issues than that of unisex toilets. While the other causes mentioned in the post, such as resources and funding are extremely important,my time in the classroom has taught me that if children are preoccupied with a desire to use the toilet,then it has a detrimental effect on their ability to learn and absorb new concepts that are being taught.Now add to the equation a child who is refraining from using the facilities due to a fear of being embarrassed and that can only impact negatively on their education and their health.Puberty is a time of many changes and a lot of confusion whilst children negociate the social and emotional pitfalls this time brings.The last thing they need is the burden of deciding whether to venture into (what should be the last bastion of privacy),in order to relieve themselves.

  2. Seriously……there are so many important topics concerning the education and well being of our children, that we should be engaging in – and investing time, effort and intellect on. Same sex or unisex toilets is the least of our concerns……..what hope do the children have, if the adults waste the little time and brain cells they have, on debating the issue that will have the least impact on the development and success of our children, as they move into a difficult and complicated society. Please parents……move on and focus on what’s important and don’t focus on the trivial and stupid issues.
    Concern yourselves with the resources and funding issues for local schools, the quality of teaching…..good parenting to support schools and pupils……..forget about the toilets, please!

    • Do you mind me asking are you Muslim Kay? Because if indeed you are, then you need to educate yourself in terms of Islamic jurisprudence and if you are not , why are you commenting here…??

      • Ibrahim, I will ignore the negative tone in your reply – and only reinforce my message that the education of our children is of great importance. The pursuit of knowledge and the positive enrichment of our children’s minds, should be our priority. The topics of toilets (unisex or single sex), is a ridiculous issue to be wasting our time and energy on. There are many more important issues that we as parents and citizens should be focussing on.

  3. Let me start by saying that this is a crazy decision that needs to be shot down instantly. But i wish the commenters on here can see their hypocracy. Yes those sodomites may wish to implement this & rightly you ask how can a country allow this, but then you speak off religious factors (ie. the washing of feet etc) that has no place within the school system which is there to enrich our children educationally & prepare them to learn,understand & become proficient in educational matters ONLY. (The home should provide the external education)
    In short, if you are expecting allowances to be made for non-indigenus religions then the sodomites also have the equal right to expect allowances for non-indigenus practices, no????

  4. You can thank the Jews for this. Yes the Jews that’s right. They seek to undermine Christianity and Islam as the vast majority of them are Atheists. They pit Christians against Muslims. Do not be deceived, the Jew is nothing more than a follower of the sly one. They seek to divide us my Muslim and Christian brothers and sisters. They are using us as tools in their plan to rule the world. Their God is money.

    • Your comment is based on suspicion without evidence, and is probably fuelled by a deeply engrained antisemitism. Muslims, Jews and Christians have lived together under Muslim rule for much of our history, with various allegiances and fighting based on politics, not beliefs.

  5. Time to reflect

    RE: Little Ilford School Unisex Washroom.

    We the parents and carers of children attending Little Ilford School in Manor Park are meeting up to share our thoughts and concerns regarding the new proposal of Unisex washrooms facilities at the school.

    The meeting will take place this Sunday

    Time: 6pm – Sunday 22nd May 2016
    Venue: The Shade Centre (main hall)
    62 Church Road, E12 6AF

    Please invite as many parents as possible so that together we can make our children’s further safer and better.

  6. As a Christian, I don’t understand all the Islamic customs for washing before prayer, but I wholly agree that unisex tolilets are a terrible idea. The LGBT lobby think that there is nothing they cannot demand now, and they are fighting to destroy the God-given male/female distinction. God-fearing parents should resist this – and even non-believers can see it is a threat to children.
    Incidentally, the argument about better use of space is only partly valid. During the day, most visits are to empty the bladder, and urinals in boys toilets take up much less space. If toilets were made unisex, more cubicles would be needed.

    • ameela momoniat

      Ditto to everything you have said. Like you said, it is not only Muslims who would object to unisex toilets in schools.
      Personally I am so fed up of this constant LGBT rubbish being pushed down our throats.

    • I was wondering where all the Christians went to… How have you allowed your country to become in this state of heedlessness. Why have the Christians in the UK stood by and allowed the UK to become a completely secular country, changing it’s laws according to the desire of the people. The only people standing by their religious principles are Muslims.
      I am sorry but Christians in the UK have long ago chosen to keep quiet while the many secular and ungodly movements have changed the the society into what it is. You have no one to blame but yourselves.

      • ameela momoniat

        They’re in the minority, most so called Christians are secularists as you mentioned. There was that Christian couple in NI who refused to make a Mr & Mr wedding cake, who were later sued and found guilty of discrimination. And likewise the Christian couple who didn’t want to rent a room in their hotel to two queers.
        But as you rightly stated most of them are quiet. For us it is part of our aqueeda to enjoin the good and forbid the bad.
        And that’s why Allah described Muslims as being the best of mankind
        كُنتُمْ خَيْرَ أُمَّةٍ أُخْرِجَتْ لِلنَّاسِ تَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَتَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنكَرِ وَتُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ ۗ

    • I’d be glad to see an end to urinals though, not modest enough for Muslims and they splash urine back over our clothes. Whose stupid idea were they anyway? I expect it was the french.

  7. Salaam,

    My daughter in year 7 attends Forest Gate Community School in East London have shared toilet. When my daughter came home and told about this after her first day, I found it bazzar! I could not believe it, we have so much problems in our society with sexual misconduct and children with luck of self-estem; this is what the educational government decide to do. My daughetr does not visit the toilet during her scjool day despite her day being 6hours long. She complained that there’s spilage on the floor (you can imagine what that is), the toilet is unsuable. I am conserned that she will develop medical condition if she preventing her self from visiting the toilet.

    • May Allah make it easy for you and your daughter.
      Is there no petition you can do with the parents and create a pressure group.
      If enough parents threten tontake their children out of the school the school has to act.

  8. Mixed or not, will there be those little astanjah shower type pipes you get. This is a must in all school toilets. Also feet washing low basins. Then clean towels to use after wudhu. Also atar and miswak on tap.
    If the toilets are mixed the sisters will not want to use the brothers miswaks, errr! Or feet cleaning towels!
    This is def def a bad idea.

  9. Imagine it’s time for Salah. Then people will be washing their feet in the wash basin and everyone will see it as it’s shared so imagine the embrasment for the child. Also astanjah ??¿

    • Its totally unacceptable.
      However for ease and cleanliness acceptability easier to teach kids rules for masa7 and the khuff.
      May come in use as get older or even at this age.

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