Public Restrooms

In the Fall of 2014, the People for Fairness Coalition (PFFC), concerned about the lack of clean, safe restrooms in needed areas of DC, launched its Downtown DC Public Restroom Initiative. Following a research-based approach, PFFC’s Public Restroom Committee developed and carried out a vigorous advocacy campaign designed to raise consciousness of the need for clean, safe public restrooms in DC, who benefits, and public restroom options.

The Committee’s efforts resulted in the introduction in 2017 of Bill 22-0223, the Public Restroom Facilities Installation and Promotion Act. This bill was passed by the DC Council in December of 2018, became Law 22-280 with the same title in April 2019, received funding in DC’s FY 2020 budget, and went into effect on October 1, 2019.

In the Spring of 2021, members of the Public Restroom Committee, along with its advisors, decided that the time was appropriate to form an independent entity called “DC Public Restrooms.” This entity is composed of interested DC residents focused on assisting with the implementation of the two pilots.

The DC Public Restroom website contains four tabs:

  • Information: Provides details about its history as part of PFFC and its current members.
  • Lessons Learned: Offers insights for others based on its advocacy efforts.
  • Access to Resources: Includes research findings, presentations, testimonies, media articles, and support from various entities.
  • Public Restroom Initiatives: Provides information on the implementation of Law 22-280, new DC Public Restroom Initiatives, other US Public Restroom Initiatives, and challenges related to installing and maintaining standalone public restrooms.

DC Public Restrooms closely monitors and updates progress in implementing the Public Restroom Pilot Emergency Public Restroom Act of 2023, which calls for piloting standalone public restrooms in five areas of Washington DC. Members of DC Public Restrooms express gratitude to PFFC for taking the initiative in launching the Downtown DC Public Restroom Initiative.