Gender-neutral restrooms to be set up in SM malls beginning November, management says

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PHOTO COURTESY: SM SUPERMALLS

Metro Manila, (CNN Philippines, October 12) – In an attempt to create a “safe community space” for all, the largest shopping mall chain in the Philippines said it will start setting up gender-neutral toilets in some of its establishments beginning November this year.

SM Supermalls management announced in a statement that it will install all-gender restrooms in some of its malls in Metro Manila, including SM Mall of Asia, SM City North EDSA, SM Megamall, SM Aura Premier, The Podium, as well as in SM Seaside City Cebu in Central Visayas .

“With inclusivity and innovation at the core of everything we do, we endeavor to create spaces where all shoppers are welcome,” SM Supermalls Chief Operating Officer Steven Tan said in a statement.

SM Supermalls management announced in a statement that it will install all-gender restrooms in some of its malls in Metro Manila, including SM Mall of Asia, SM City North EDSA, SM Megamall, SM Aura Premier, The Podium, as well as in Central Visayas - SM Seaside City Cebu, the management said.

This announcement comes months after transgender woman Gretchen Diez was barred from using the girl’s bathroom in a mall in Quezon City, which has an ordinance protecting members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning (LGBTQ) community amid the absence of a national written policy.

A bill seeking to protect the LGBTQ sector has long been pending with Congress, as some legislators continue to oppose it.

READ: A law to protect the Filipino LGBTQ+ community against discrimination remains elusive