NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A frustrated father is fighting for what he says is only fair: A clean place to change his baby’s diaper in men’s restrooms.
The Manhattan man is on a mission to get public places to keep up with the changing times.
As CBS2’s Jessica Layton reported, the whimpering cry of 4-month-old Saiorsa means it’s time to be changed. But for city dads like Tom Barrett, dirty diaper duty quickly becomes a dilemma.
“It saddens me that I have to put my daughter onto a dirty floor,” he told Layton. “It’s just disgusting to think about.”
But he doesn’t have many options when he’s out and about with the baby, saying the majority of men’s restrooms are missing changing tables.
“This is a great and modern city with some forward thinking, but this is not really forwarding thinking right now. This is behind the times,” said Barrett.
Feeling frustrated, the full-time father started a petition highlight the problem he faces every time it’s time for him to change a diaper in public. It calls on Congress to pass a bill requiring all public restrooms to accommodate both mothers and fathers in caring for their kids.
A federal law passed in 2016 mandates changing tables in men’s restrooms in federal buildings, but Barrett’s wife Anna, who works full-time, says that’s not enough.
“It’s not just a responsibility of the mothers,” she said. “Times have changed. We need to get with the program.”
The local family’s plea comes as a Facebook rant from a New Hampshire dad went viral this week. It said, “In the generation of equality among genders and races, then how about making sure us fathers can change our children’s diapers on a changing table like the mothers can.”
“Fathers are parents, too,” said Barrett.