Governor Signs City of Santa Monica-Sponsored State Bill on All Gender Public Restrooms

September 30, 2022 2:44 PM

SANTA MONICA, Calif. – Yesterday, Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law Senate Bill 1194, allowing local governments to require that public restrooms be designed as all gender multi-stall restrooms to serve all residents and visitors.

Authored by Sen. Ben Allen, the new state law authorizes a city or county to require, by ordinance or resolution, that public restrooms constructed within its jurisdiction comply with specified requirements rather than the state plumbing standards. These standards have, until now, been a barrier to municipalities converting gendered restrooms to gender universal. All gender restrooms are more inclusive facilities that benefit all, including gender diverse and transgender individuals, those individuals that require the assistance of a caregiver of a different gender, and for parents with children of different genders.

"We are thrilled to have this bill signed into law so that we can deliver on more inclusive public facilities that serve people of all genders and gender identities, while supporting families and those who need the help of a caregiver," said Mayor Sue Himmelrich. "Santa Monica was proud to join West Hollywood and Senator Allen in advancing this meaningful step forward for equity and inclusion."

City staff will bring forward an ordinance for City Council consideration in 2023. Once a local ordinance is adopted, the City will have the authority to convert existing public restrooms and to construct new facilities that are gender universal.

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