Universal Changing Table meets the needs of People with Disabilities
Ohio Statehouse announces addition of height-adjustable universal changing table
September 18, 2023
Changing Table in Mother's Room
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board (CSRAB) is proud to announce the addition of a height-adjustable universal changing table at the Ohio Statehouse to meet the restroom needs of people with disabilities and those with complex medical conditions through collaborations with the Montgomery County Board of Developmental Disabilities Services and Changing Spaces Ohio, an organization advocating for accessible restrooms for all.
“People with disabilities who have mobility challenges need access to public venues just like any other group, yet the typical accessible restroom stall does not provide the equipment or the space necessary to meet their needs,” said CSRAB Executive Director Laura Battocletti. “The addition of a universal changing table is an improvement to accessibility that underscores that the Ohio Statehouse truly is ‘the People’s House.’”
Universal changing tables are similar to infant changing tables found in restrooms at restaurants and shopping and entertainment venues, but are designed to accommodate the height and weight of adults. Without these tables, children and adults with disabilities cannot access public venues or must be changed on the ground or in unsafe environments.
The Statehouse’s mobile universal changing table is conveniently located in what is known as the Mother’s Room, a private room off the Map Room on the ground floor. It can accommodate people up to 400 pounds.
The Ohio Statehouse changing table project came about when LMK Advocacy reached out to Changing Spaces Ohio for assistance to create a universal changing station at the Statehouse for the Ohio Association of County Boards’ Developmental Disabilities Advocacy and Awareness Day in March. The Montgomery County Board of Developmental Disabilities Services purchased two mobile universal changing tables and provided them to the Statehouse so adults with disabilities could meet with their elected officials as part of this special event. LMK Advocacy worked with representatives of the Montgomery County Board to find a place for the table, allowing people with disabilities who lived hours away to travel to the Statehouse and take part. Afterwards, the Montgomery County Board and Changing Spaces Ohio worked with Battocletti to identify a universal changing table for permanent installation and provided expertise to ensure that the installation met the specifications of the International Building Code.
“The addition of these tables provides a safe, hygienic, and dignified space for people to address their restroom needs, and we are proud to partner with Director Battocletti and the Ohio Statehouse to make this much-needed accommodation a reality,” said Montgomery County Board of Developmental Disabilities Services Superintendent Dr. Pamela Combs.
Since construction of the Ohio Statehouse began in 1839, the State continues to make improvements to enhance accessibility, including the installation of wheelchair charging stations and the provision of assistive listening devices for people with hearing loss. A complete list of accessibility accommodations is available on the Statehouse website.
About the Ohio Statehouse:
The Ohio Statehouse is a working office building that serves as the home of the Ohio Senate, the Ohio House of Representatives, and the offices of the Governor. Opened to legislators and the public in 1857, it is the eighth-oldest working capitol in the nation and has been designated a National Historic Landmark by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior. Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board (CSRAB) is responsible for maintaining the historic character of the Ohio Statehouse while providing for the health, safety and convenience of those who work in and visit Capitol Square.
About the Montgomery County Board of Developmental Disabilities Services:
The Montgomery County Board of Developmental Disabilities Services
(MCBDDS) is one of 88 county boards in the State of Ohio that advocate for people with developmental disabilities. It provides services, supports and funding to more than 5,000 children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Montgomery County, Ohio, and has led the effort to place universal changing tables in public spaces statewide.
About Changing Spaces:
The Changing Spaces Campaign is a nationwide advocacy movement formed to spread awareness of the need for height-adjustable adult-size changing tables for children and adults in public places. The Ohio Chapter
of the organization has made great progress toward the installation of such tables, partnering with the Montgomery County Board of Developmental Disabilities and collaborating with other organizations to help them select and install tables and lifts throughout Ohio. Changing Spaces Ohio and its nonprofit, Inspired Access Foundation, created a map showing the location of universal changing tables
throughout the country.
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Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board media contact:
Montgomery County Board of Developmental Disabilities Services media contact:
Janice Saddler Rice
Changing Spaces Campaign Ohio media contact:
Photos will be added to the website on Monday and Tuesday this week. https://www.ohiostatehouse.org/galleries/accessibility-at-the-ohio-statehouse