There is no shortage of things to complain about when it comes to public restrooms. However, there’s one issue in particular that’s made its way into the spotlight thanks to some celebrity attention: the scarcity of changing tables in men’s public restrooms.

 

Actor and new dad, Ashton Kutcher, recently spoke up about the problem on his Facebook page. He stated that there are never any changing stations in men’s public restrooms, and he promised a Facebook shout-out to the first establishment that he finds with a changing table in the men’s room.

 

Kutcher is hardly the first man to recognize and vocalize his frustration with this issue. Dads across the country have sought to draw attention to the situation for some time. In California, a bill was drafted that would have made it so that establishments with changing tables in the women’s room are also required to have them in the men’s rooms. Unfortunately, the Potty Parity for Parents Act bills, as they were called, were ultimately vetoed by California Governor Jerry Brown.

 

Kutcher express his frustration on Facebook page over never being able to find a changing station in men's public restrooms (huffingtonpost.com)

Kutcher express his frustration on Facebook page over never being able to find a changing station in men’s public restrooms (huffingtonpost.com)

The lack of changing stations in men’s public restrooms is a problem that stems from the prevalent but distorted mentality that it is primarily women who change babies’ diapers. It is a mentality that is damaging to both women’s and men’s rights as parents. While it confines women to traditional ideas of motherhood, it simultaneously takes away from the modern dad’s ability to break free from stereotypes and achieve equality to women in the sphere of child-rearing.

 

In the world of PR and marketing, we know the value that a celebrity brand ambassador can have in influencing the popularity and relevance of a product or brand through endorsement. When it comes to important social and political issues, celebrities can have that same power and are given an opportunity to use their influence to galvanize the public and spark change. We have seen this in the case of celebrities like Emma Watson, who has spoken frequently on the importance of women’s rights and has inspired individuals around the world to participate in the conversation.

 

As Kutcher takes on the issue of equality for dads, perhaps his voice can add to the momentum of the movement for parenthood parity, diapers and all.

 

What are some of the reasons that you can think of regarding why it’s important for businesses to have changing stations in both women’s and men’s public restrooms? Share your thoughts with us below or tweet me @tamarahoumi