May 25, 2018

DAVIE VILLAGE POST Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada LGBTQ2+ Hub

All-gender restroom ‘a step forward’ at Lord Tweedsmuir

Photo Credit To Jennifer Lang

Surrey’s oldest high school is breaking new ground this week, celebrating its first-ever Pride Week, and opening a gender-neutral restroom.

Rainbow streamers have filled the Hub, and on Tuesday, students decorated colourful, tie dye T-shirts. Students and staff planned to wear them to show their LGBT support at Thursday’s official opening of the new, all-gender restroom, located on the second floor.

“When there are [U.S.] states taking a step back, it’s nice to know Tweedsmuir is taking a step forward,” said Liam Ponzini, a representative from the school’s Gay Straight Alliance. He will be cutting the ribbon May 5 alongside school principal Allan Buggie during a opening ceremony that will be followed by short, symbolic parade from the new washroom to the school’s Hub.

The single-occupant washroom makes its debut after about three years of lobbying by students.

Ponzini said its symbolic value is important. “Having this bathroom in this school is more of a symbol that you can be who you are and you don’t have to be judged or harassed.”

Grade 11 student Mackenzie Jasper, a Tweedsmuir GSA rep, said she hopes it will help put an end to discrimination before it begins.

She credited the work of the GSA and teachers for supporting the project.

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About The Author

Rick has lived in Vancouver since 1991 - first off Commercial Drive and now in Renfrew Heights - with his husband of 34 years, Dan. He has a background in travel, an interest in LGBT history, and a fondness for all that is geek. As co-publisher of Davie Village Post, he looks for stories and news which are relevant to LGBT Vancouver, and invites you to submit your items and ideas.

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