Editorial: Accessible religious spaces on campus are key

Renovations to the ablutions room—a space used by students to wash themselves before prayer—on the second floor of the University Centre began over a year ago in order to upgrade both the men’s and women’s facilities and to make them more accessible.

With many students from various religions, it’s important that spaces available on Carleton’s campus for prayer are accessible and clean.

But, despite plans to include four accessible foot baths in the men’s ablution room, none were planned to be installed in the women’s ablution room (which is actually located inside a washroom on the second floor).

Back in March, then-Carleton University Students’ Association (CUSA) president Fahd Alhattab told The Charlatan that the changes would  make “the men and women’s bathroom fully accessible to meet the standards of the Ontario Disability Act.”

Both women and men need to be able to practice their religion in an open and convenient space that is accessible to them anytime.

With the renovations costing CUSA nearly $180,000, both the men’s and women’s ablution rooms should at the very least, be accessible to all students who use them, regardless of their ability.

We should all care about accessibility for students, because as a community, if anyone of us needed accommodations for our own beliefs, wouldn’t we want to receive the same courtesy?