Tags: walgreens | restroom | policy | complaint

Walgreens Restroom Policy Shifts to Neutral After Complaint

(YouTube/ACLU of Southern California)

By    |   Thursday, 08 February 2018 08:09 AM

Walgreens has now shifted its restroom policy to neutral – as in pick your own gender – after a customer complained she was discriminated against at the drugstore's Hollywood location in California.

The incident happened last year when Jessie Meehan asked to use the restroom at the Walgreens on Sunset Boulevard after purchasing items there before attending an LGBTQ Pride festival, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Meehan, who is not transgender, charged that she was told that she couldn’t use the woman's restroom because she looked like a man, the Times said. A store manager informed her that policy restricted use to the bathroom based on appearance, but another store manager denied such a policy existed, per the Times.

"I had to go so I didn't put up much of a fight and used the stall while the men used the urinals next to me," Meehan said in an email to Walgreens, per the Times. "This in itself was very humiliating for me and I felt extremely uncomfortable."

Meehan contacted the American Civil Liberties Union after the incident, which led to Walgreens policy change, noted the organization. Walgreens announced this week that customers will be allowed to use the restroom that corresponds to their gender identity, according to the Times.

The drugstore chain, located in Deerfield, Illinois and owned by Walgreens Boots Alliance, confirmed the change to the Times but declined further comment.

"Everyone needs safe restroom access, and California law protects every person's right to access restrooms based on their gender identity in workplaces, schools, and business establishments," Amanda Goad, a staff attorney said in an ACLU Southern California statement.

"It's important for businesses to make sure their employees understand that requirement, just like Walgreens is now doing, because Jessie Meehan had the courage to stand up for her rights."

According to the ACLU, Walgreens was recently honored for the 11th year in a row by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation for scoring 100 percent on its Corporate Equality Index, naming the company one of the "Best Places to Work for LGBT Equality."

The ACLU said "as the situation faced by Meehan showed, bathroom discrimination can still be a source of disenfranchisement at even the most progressive companies."

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Walgreens has now shifted its restroom policy to neutral – as in pick your own gender – after a customer complained she was discriminated against at the drugstore's Hollywood location in California.
walgreens, restroom, policy, complaint
371
2018-09-08
Thursday, 08 February 2018 08:09 AM
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