By Melissa Turosik
There are currently four baby changing stations in restrooms across Youngstown State University’s campus.
One member of the YSU Student Government Association is pushing for an initiative to increase the number to provide convenience and sanitary means for parents and guardians.
Korinne Sackela, SGA vice president for assessment and enrichment, is a new mom and a full-time student with a part-time job on campus. She said that sometimes means she has to bring her eight-month-old to school.
“I found myself changing him on tables in random classrooms or on my office desk if I needed to because changing tables are so scarce,” Sackela said.
She said it’s a challenge to work around the lack of changing tables.
“Changing my son on tables and floors across campus is unsafe, unsanitary and very inconvenient,” she said.
Sackela said this is a problem for all parents and guardians of young children on campus.
SGA President Rayann Atway said the university is not being very accommodating toward students, faculty and staff who have children.
She said through the single-user restroom resolution that was passed last semester by SGA and approved by the Academic Senate, there will be more changing stations on campus.
Due to the resolution, the university will be pushed to implement more single-user restrooms as well.
Ernie Barkett, vice president of SGA, said over the summer, restrooms will be renovated to adopt the policy. By the beginning of the fall semester, he said there should be at least one changing station in every academic building at the university, which will be beneficial.
“This creates an added convince for our students and we hope it will make parents [and] guardians of young children feel more comfortable,” Barkett said.
Summer Barker, a staff architect at YSU, said the implementation of baby changing stations will be included in their restroom renovation projects.
Barker said she feels it is important to continue adding the baby changing stations in women’s, men’s and unisex restrooms across campus to accommodate both mothers and fathers.