WEST HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA.com) — West Hollywood has a new law that is winning praise from the transgender community.
Starting Thursday, single-stall bathrooms in public places must become gender-neutral. The law will require businesses and restaurants to make separate men and women restrooms accessible to everyone.
"It's a pretty simple fix. It's just a plastic sign that we can take down and put back up," said Maggie Crifasi of Pizza Rustica, which made the change last weekend. "Everybody here is so gay-friendly."
The ordinance is a relief for many in the transgender community who say they've had problems in the past.
"Bathrooms were always a very scary place for me. It was a place where I got beaten up by other boys at school. It's a place where I've been made fun off by women when I'm using the restroom," Drian Juarez, a transgender activist, said.
The law will not apply to restrooms with more than one stall in the same room and businesses will have 60 days to comply.
"We've always been a progressive city," said Genevieve Morrill of the West Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. "Anytime there's a change for business, especially when a community is comprised so much of small business, you want to make sure that it doesn't have a financial impact to the business."
Juarez told KCAL9's Erica Nochlin she hopes more cities will sign on.
"It's definitely a big step for the city and hopefully other cities will follow," Juarez said.
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