Portable Sanitation Association International

PSAI Newsletter Jan 8, 2020

Issue link: http://psai.uberflip.com/i/1198719

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Page 2 of 23

Page 3 ASSOCIATIONINSIGHT Portable Sanitation Association International News BIWEEKLY EDITION JANUARY 8, 2020 Since the language requiring baby changing stations is new, the definitions and required locations for baby changing stations has not yet been tested in court. One could argue that it generally does not apply to portable sanitation equipment. Falling back on that assumption, however, would place the burden on you and your customer to demonstrate the stations are not needed under the law. More importantly, the spirit of the law is to ensure that baby changing stations are available to parents of both genders whenever restrooms are provided. From this point of view, it would be hard to defend the idea that baby changing stations are not needed. Any parent who has taken a child in diapers to a public event knows how important those facilities can be. So while this new law is Illinois-specific, the question is a broader one that applies to all portable sanitation providers serving special events. Portable sanitation providers give baby changing stations mixed reviews. A recent social media discussion on the topic echoed sentiments I have heard from operators for years concerning baby changing stations. • "[Manufacturer] has a family unit with changing table in it. Love it!" • "What scares me is the liability. Kids are going to climb on them." • "We incorporate them into all handicap units, along with a solar light, and market them as 'family accessible' units." • "You cannot properly mount one of these inside a portable toilet [...] Way too much liability." • "I have thought about putting changing stations in the handicap units but I just don't want to deal with the diapers being tossed into the tank." Generally speaking, contributors to this discussion seemed to fall into three schools of thought: (1) changing tables are a great way to meet needs and make money; (2) changing tables are too big of a liability, so avoid them; and (3) I need more information. Let's take a look at these issues. Managing Liability. If you are running a business, you have many exposures to risk. Playing it "safe" and failing to provide baby changing stations in places where they are required may expose your company to liability as well. It might seem like a no-win situation, but it probably doesn't have to be. Generally speaking, it appears that the liability of offering baby changing stations is one that can be managed. At least one major portable restroom manufacturer sells units that has this equipment already installed. They have taken pains to ensure that it is safe for the precious cargo it will hold and, by extension, will be safe for you to offer. Other manufacturers construct their units so that changing tables can be added. If you have doubts, talk with your manufacturer of choice and ask the tough questions about how to best outfit your units with safe, easily maintained tables. Whether the units come with the tables or you add them according to manufacturer's guidelines, be sure you check and maintain them properly to manage your risk. New Illinois Law Prompts Debate about Baby Changing Stations…continued from page 1 …Continued on page 18

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