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For parents in public with a diaper to change, relief could be on way

Desperate parents seeking safe, private, and clean spaces to change their baby’s diapers could have more options.

HF3222 would modify the State Building Code to require installation of baby diaper changing stations in buildings with restrooms accessible to the public.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Jamie Becker-Finn (DFL-Roseville), was approved by the House Labor Committee Wednesday and referred to the House Early Childhood Finance and Policy Division. There is no Senate companion.

The updated building code would be met by providing a baby diaper changing station in either a unisex restroom or in both a men’s restroom and a women’s restroom.

“My husband and I were continually surprised at how many places did not have changing stations in the bathrooms, particularly in the men’s bathroom,” said Becker-Finn. She noted that her bill also addresses a parity issue in bathrooms, and would ensure that “dads can be parenting as much as moms.”

Katy Kozhimannil, an associate professor in the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, testified that enacting this legislation would ensure that a basic health need is being met for all Minnesotans.

Scott McLellan, director of the Labor and Industry Department's Construction Codes and Licensing Division, said the bill would not require building owners to retrofit bathrooms in existing structures, but would only affect new building construction and renovations of existing bathrooms.


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