The Lakewood, Dallas Facebook page was abuzz with opinions this past week, although it had nothing to do with the typical crime report, political commentary or business recommendation.
The topic of conversation? Baby changing tables.
Lakewood neighbor Chris Fox wants the City of Dallas to adopt an ordinance requiring baby changing tables in the men’s restroom of businesses like restaurants. As a new dad, Fox is frustrated that his wife is the only parent able to change their son’s diaper at most public places.
“That sends a message that it’s a woman’s job,” Fox told the Advocate.
He reached out to City Councilman Mark Clayton’s office. His staff suggested Fox collect feedback and data before meeting with Clayton himself. So he’s tallying the number of restaurants with changing tables in men’s rooms. Out of the 18 that Fox has visited in Lakewood and Uptown, only four offer them: Lakewood Smokehouse, Zoe’s Kitchen, Edith’s French Cafe and Dream Café.
Fox also asked neighbors for feedback on the Lakewood, Dallas page. “My goal, as a new dad, and someone who believes in equal access for all, is to hopefully see changing tables in all men’s bathrooms, but I know it’s an uphill battle and know there will be challenges along the way,” he wrote. “I’d like to be able to go to the city and say “this amount of people support this and this amount doesn’t.”
Nearly 250 reactions and 120 comments later, Fox says the feedback has been primarily positive.
“A lot of people have been reaching out to me and supporting it,” he says. “It’s been shared a lot. … There’s been people that have offered their opinions. A few people have said it should be up to the businesses, and there’s liability with it.”
Fox even caught the attention of NBC, who featured him five days after he wrote the Facebook post.
“It happened really fast, and I was not expecting it,” he says. “I am still in the very early stages of this.”
“I’m one of those people that will figure it out as I go along. I know in my heart it’s something that needs to happen, so I don’t really care what the obstacles are.”
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