Gender-Neutral Bathroom Committee updates

November 1, 2022

After last year’s work by the Gender Neutral Bathroom Committee to educate the congregation on the need for a gender neutral bathroom, there was overwhelming consensus to create this space within our building. This desire was confirmed at last year’s annual meeting.

In parallel with this committee’s work, the Beautification Committee performed a study to determine the possible locations for a Gender Neutral/Handicapped Accessible bathroom to be located in the temple. Given the plumbing in the building, two possible options were examined:

  1. Create the new bathroom somewhere in the footprint of the current men’s and women’s bathrooms
  2. Convert the current cantor’s office into the GN/HA bathroom

Due to multiple factors including plumbing codes and regulations, option 1 is not a choice. Therefore option 2 is being pursued.

Constructing the new bathroom in the location of the current cantor’s office means that another location for the cantor’s office must be found. After looking around the building for a candidate location, the choice became apparent: keep the office in the classroom wing. And the best place in the classroom wing is right next to the current office’s location.

Subsequent to the annual meeting, a team composed of members of the Gender Neutral Bathroom Committee, the Beautification Committee, the school, and Tefilah was put together and tasked by the Board of Directors to continue the effort to create the new bathroom and to provide regular updates to the congregation. At its recent meeting, this team concluded that to best meet the need for a suitable cantor’s office along with the future needs of our religious school we need to reconfigure classroom five. Our next step is to consult with an architect and the committee on how best to divide the current Classroom 5 space into a new office and an educational space suited for use as a small classroom, or a school resource room.

Architectural drawings are now being created. Within the next month, these drawings will be reviewed with the aforementioned team and their input will be factored in. We will then go out for bids on the construction. Once we have the bids in hand, we will decide upon the builder and determine how best to finance the construction. The goal is to have the work done next summer in time for the 2023 High Holidays.

If you have any questions, please contact Jerry Kazin.