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March 2023: California Assembly Bill Pushes for Women’s Designated Restrooms on Jobsites

08 Mar

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Update Applicable to:
All employers in the state of California.

What happened?
February 7, 2023, California Assembly Member Rebecca Bauer-Kahan (D-16) introduced Assembly Bill No. 521 (AB No. 521), which calls on the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) to submit a rulemaking proposal to the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board that would “require at least one women’s designated restroom for job sites with two or more required water closets.” 

What are the details?
AB 521 would require the Board to review these proposed changes and consider adopting the revised standards on or before December 31, 2025. AB 521 relies on the following legislative findings and declarations in support of its proposal:

  1. Women are underrepresented in the trades and face numerous barriers on job sites.
  2. One of these many barriers is access to a clean and secure restroom.
  3. Shared restrooms often pose sanitary and safety concerns for women on job sites.

The bill further declares that “it is necessary to take action to ensure that women have access to at least one separate women’s designated restroom at job sites when other restroom facilities are also available for others at the job site.”

The bill proposes to add Section 6722 to the California Labor Code, which would require the submission of a rulemaking proposal that would ultimately take the form of a revision to Section 3364 of Title 8 of the California Code of Regulations.

The current version of Section 3364 calls for providing two or more water closets on any jobsite with at least sixteen employees. Section 3364 also requires that “all single-user toilet facilities [be] designated for all-gender use” while requiring that “all multi-user separate toilet facilities [be] provided in equal number to each sex.”

For more information, please see the links below:

Assembly Bill No. 521 (AB No. 521)

Article

What do employers need to do?
Employers should review the links provided above and be on the lookout for more news on this bill proposal.

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