Severely disabled people who need specialist facilities when out and about will benefit from more than 500 new Changing Places Toilets which are to be built in England.
The Government has announced 513 state-of-the-art facilities are to be built across 191 local authority areas after allocating £23.5 million of funding as part of its National Disability Strategy.
The announcement means those with disabilities will be able to enjoy everything their local area has to offer with dignity and freedom.
Changing Places Toilets are larger accessible toilets for people who cannot use standard accessible toilets, with equipment such as hoists, curtains, adult-sized changing benches, and space for carers. There are currently just over 1,300 of them in England.
In the absence of Changing Places Toilets, disabled people and their carers face having to limit what they drink to avoid needing the toilet when they’re out, risking dehydration and urinary tract infections among other difficulties.
Ministerial Disability Champion Eddie Hughes MP said: “It goes without saying that people with severe disabilities, their families and carers should be able to go shopping, plan a day out or travel without needing to worry about whether they will have access to suitable toilet facilities.
“I’m delighted that our funding will help provide over 500 new Changing Places Toilets in England, enabling people to enjoy everything their local area has to offer with dignity and freedom.”
As part of the funding allocation, new facilities will now be built in the following venues:
- Public parks and open spaces
- Tourist attractions including historic properties, seaside resorts and zoos
- Museums, theatres, and galleries
- Shopping malls
- Libraries and public buildings.