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Massachusetts 
Chapter

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The Massachusetts Chapter of the Changing Spaces Campaign is led by advocate Jayme Betts.

Contact us to join our advocacy efforts in Massachusetts!

Email: MAChangingSpaces@gmail.com

Facebook: Changing Spaces Massachusetts 

Instagram: Changing_Spaces_MA

LinkTree: Changing_Spaces_MA

An Act requiring universal changing stations in public buildings

Advocacy in Massachusetts

Welcome to Changing Spaces MA! My name is Jayme Betts and I decided to lead the Changing Spaces advocacy campaign in Massachusetts after experiencing, along with my daughter, the challenges that traditional public restrooms present for disabled individuals. Sophia is a 4-year-old with developmental delays and Sotos syndrome. We ran into this problem earlier than most when we realized that baby changing tables are not safe for a person over 35lbs, yet these are the only changing tables available in almost every public place we venture. 

You can see here a photo of a very happy girl taken on the only adjustable-height universal changing table we have ever encountered, in the Charlotte airport.

Our usual diaper changing experience is quite different, and there are no smiles. Sophia has not tolerated a baby changing table for some time (she's smart enough to know that it is unsafe), which usually leaves us with the public restroom floor as the only option. In a room where we are usually telling our children not to touch anything, we are forced to lay our child on the floor exposed to germs and with no privacy. If there is a single occupancy restroom, we at least get privacy, but we are still on the bathroom floor. Other options include our car trunk -not so great in Boston winter- or simply staying home. There are times this has been the easiest option - not because Sophia has a disability, but because the accommodations are not in place to change her diaper in a safe, private, and dignified way. Sophia loves going to read books at the library, swimming, riding roller coasters, learning at the museum, and doing so much more as a part of the community.  All of this is becoming harder as she gets bigger, and her privacy as well as caregiver ability are becoming more of an issue.

 

When most of us plan to go out in the community, we think about things like transportation, parking, where we'll eat - not whether or not there will be a place for us to meet the most basic human need of toileting. This is not a need that I realized was unmet until I experienced it. It is not something that I believe our politicians and businesses can ignore any longer - not when something so simple can be done to so dramatically improve the lived experience of disabled people of all ages. So many of the wonderful memories we have as a family were planned around or cut short by a diaper situation. So many families miss out on creating these memories because it is just too hard and painful. It doesn’t have to be this way. That is why I'm here, and I look forward to growing our advocacy and doing my part to create a more accessible and inclusive Massachusetts. 

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Universal Changing Table Locations

Contact

Jayme Betts

Massachusetts Chapter Leader

Email: MAChangingSpaces@gmail.com

Facebook: Changing Spaces Massachusetts 

Instagram: Changing_Spaces_MA

LinkTree: Changing_Spaces_MA

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