Tim Hortons Is Putting Diaper-Changing Tables in All Men's Washrooms Across Canada
Why don’t all restaurants have change tables in men’s and women’s washrooms?
Tim Hortons has announced it will be adding change tables to their men’s washrooms after a dad of two was forced to change his son in a women’s washroom at one of the Quebec locations.
Taking a baby to a restaurant can be a trying task on a good day, without the added chore of finding a place to change them when they need it.
That’s exactly the sticky spot Chris Webb found himself in last week. His son Owen, who is 14 months old, needed to be changed — but the men’s washroom had no changing table for him to use.
This isn’t an uncommon case, as there aren’t many changing stations in men’s washrooms anywhere in Canada.
Webb posted a series of tweets targeting the well-known company.
The tweets called out Tim’s for humiliating him by forcing him to use the women’s bathroom in order to change his son. Webb said the staff went out of their way to help him out, but he pointed out that, in 2018, there should be change tables in all bathrooms.
There is no legislation that requires restaurants to provide changing tables in their washrooms, but it’s becoming a more common complaint.
To only provide changing tables in women’s washrooms is essentially implying that it’s just women who need to change children. Not only is this problematic from a gender equality perspective, but it also alienates male caregivers.
Have a change table in them. Getting out the house with my 1 year old and going for lunch shouldn't mean that I have to explain myself to women as to why I'm in the women's bathroom. Brining this up to the supervisor in the restaurant I was told "it's ok the women don't mind"— Chris Webb (@Crippit) August 3, 2018
In response to Webb’s tweets, Tim Hortons released a statement to CBC on Monday.
"Obviously as a family brand, we need to make accessible changing tables available for all of our guests. This is now standard in our new restaurant design that is rolling out across Canada," the statement to CBC says.
Tim Hortons reached out to Webb to let him know that their locations across Canada will be revamped in coming years to include change tables in as many washrooms as possible, according to CBC.
Webb’s comments sparked commentary on Twitter, with many parents sharing similar stories and thoughts on the matter. There are currently multiple online petitions calling on businesses to add change tables to all their bathrooms.
Ontario legislation requires a change table in universal family washrooms in large, new buildings, but the country as a whole has a long way to go. Restaurants built prior to 2015 are exempt from this law, as are small ones, according to the Toronto Sun.