Who is an Accessible Toilet for?
No not just a wheelchair user. It could be for someone who has difficulty walking, standing or sitting, people who require the use of access to water after using the toilet. It could be for the hearing impaired, those with visual impairment, learning difficulties or those with mental health problems.
Take with you proof of disability and your home address. Proof of disability may include one of the following:
- DLA (Disability living allowance)
- Doctor’s letter
- Attendance allowance letter
- Blue badge plus bill e.g. Council tax or electricity
What should you look for when making sure that a toilet for the Disabled is accessible?
Access should be level, with no rims or steps to trip over.
If a door opens outwards it is important to put a D Bar on the inside of the door, near the handle, along the width of the door to enable a the user to pull the door closed.
Floor surfaces need to be non-slip
There should be an emergency pull cord for assistance
If the door opens inwards, make sure that there is room for a wheelchair user to turn around to shut the door. In fact make sure that there is room for a personal assistant to support the person who is using the toilet. There could be a Dog for the Disabled or a Guide Dog for the blind. Can they work within the area provided?
Make sure that the toilet seat is high or low enough by providing an elevated seat that can hang off the wall when not in use. Use contrasting colours so that the seat can be easily identified.
Provide grab rails on either side of the toilet to give a secure grip so that the person can sit or stand easily, make sure that they fold away behind the toilet when not in use, to enable people who need to transfer from a wheelchair. Make sure there is a contrast in the colour of the walls to the grab rails.
Make sure that the handle to pull the flush is on the same side of access, that it is easy to use for those with limited hand movements (eg a spatula handle)
Keep Rubbish bins and sanitary bins away from the toilet so that a wheelchair user can back up to the toilet to transfer across. Make sure that there is a clinical waste bin, so that larger items, than sanitary ware can be disposed of.
Make sure that there is a full length mirror so that walking disabled and wheelchair users can view themselves easily to ensure they are tidy before leaving the toilet.
Make the sink, soap dispenser and hand drying accessible from the toilet, making sure that they do not interfere with any grab rails which assist the person in standing.
The sink should be fitted with lever handles to enable easy opening and closing.
Any equipment edges should be rounded
Lighting should not be on a timer.