MAR 22 1993 The Honorable Fred Upton U.S. House of Representatives 1713 Longworth Office Building Washington, D.C.

20515-2204 Dear Congressman Upton: This letter is in response to your inquiry on behalf of (b)(6) , concerning the possibility of providing unisex toilet rooms in places of public accommodation. The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ("ADA") authorizes the Department of Justice to provide technical assistance to individuals and entities having rights or obligations under the Act. This letter provides informal guidance to assist your constituent in understanding the ADA's requirements. However, it does not constitute a legal interpretation, and it is not binding on the Department. Although the regulations issued by this Department under title III of the ADA (enclosed) do not require unisex toilet rooms, the regulations do allow provision of one accessible unisex room instead of accessible restrooms for each sex in some situations. For instance, under title III of the ADA, places of public accommodation are required to do whatever is readily achievable to make their facilities accessible to individuals with disabilities. If it is not readily achievable for some places of public accommodation to provide two accessible toilet rooms, then it may be sufficient to provide one accessible, unisex toilet room. cc: Records, Chrono, Wodatch, McDowney, Bowen, Contois, FOIA. Udd\Contois\cgl\upton

01-01962 -2Similarly, when places of public accommodation undertake alterations to their facilities, they are generally required to comply with the architectural standards set out in the appendix to the Department's title III regulation. These standards, known as the ADA Accessibility Guidelines ("ADAAG"), generally require that any room that is altered must be made accessible; however, at section 4.1.6(3)(e) they also provide that if it is technically infeasible to make a restroom that is being altered accessible, an accessible, unisex toilet room may be provided. The Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board, also known as the Access Board, is the organization that is initially responsible for drafting and amending ADAAG. We have taken the liberty of forwarding (b)(6) letter to the Access Board, so that they may consider her comments and the possibility of proposing that ADAAG be altered or amended. I have enclosed for your information a copy of the Department of Justice's title III implementing regulation, which contains ADAAG, and a copy of the Department's Technical Assistance manual for title III, which contains a section discussing the requirements of ADAAG. I hope this information is useful to you in responding to your constituent. Sincerely, James P. Turner Acting Assistant Attorney General Civil Rights Division Enclosures (2)

01-01963 MAR 22, 1993 Mr. Lawrence W. Roffee Executive Director Access Board 1331 F Street, N.W. Suite 1000 Washington, D.C. 20004-1111 Dear Mr. Roffee: Congressman Fred Upton forwarded to this office a letter from his constituent, XX regarding the provision of accessible unisex toilet rooms in places of public accommodation. While we have responded to Congressman Upton, we are taking the liberty of forwarding XX letter to you, so that you may consider her comments. Enclosed you will find copies of both (b)(6) letter and our response to Congressman Upton. Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely, James P. Turner Acting Assistant Attorney General Civil Rights Division Enclosures (2) cc: Records; Chrono; Wodatch; McDowney; Bowen; Contois; FOIA. \udd\contois\admin\accessbd.ltr