To use or not to use? That is the question

Tesco's accessible toilet sign with additional wording of not every disability is visibleLast week I posted a short video about the access symbol and how some people think that anything with this sign means it is for wheelchair users only. There is no confusion about accessible parking because you need a permit. Accessible toilets are another matter – non-wheelchair users are often given black looks, or worse, if they are seen entering or exiting an accessible toilet. It is interesting to see that Tesco’s supermarkets in the UK are tackling this after lobbying by the Crohns and Colitis organisation. Tesco’s are erecting new signs for accessible toilets with the addition of “not every disability is visible”. 

A major anxiety for people living with a chronic health condition, like Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis, is being being confronted about why they are using the toilet or being refused access. People with chronic health conditions may urgently need to use the accessible toilet.

It is worth noting that supermarkets in the UK have in-store toilets – a great convenience for people who “need to go” quickly and don’t want to abandon their trolley.