Construction companies are not explicitly required to provide portable women’s restrooms at a construction site.
OSHA specifies in their Sanitation standard that “the employer does not have to provide separate toilet facilities for each sex when they will not be occupied by more than one employee at a time, can be locked from the inside, and contain at least one toilet.”
However, OSHA requires that employers provide “accessible sanitary facilities for ALL personnel and to ensure that these facilities are maintained in an appropriately, clean, and sanitary condition.”
The key for your construction site is determining whether you will be employing a significant number of women at the job site. Then, you should consider offering a standalone portable women’s restroom.
When deciding whether to provide a designated women’s restroom, review your construction plan, which should include key personnel that will be working at the site.
Taking a proactive approach will allow you to anticipate needs and be prepared to follow best practices providing a more comfortable restroom experience for female construction workers.
– For example, the first phase of the construction project may include a roster of predominantly male construction workers.
However, if you anticipate female construction workers joining the job site during the second or third phase of the project, then you can schedule the delivery of a designated women’s restroom at a later time.
In their best practices recommendation, OSHA encourages construction site companies to take additional steps for sanitization and lighting for both male and female workers.
– Specifically, OSHA recommends that companies provide a container of hand sanitizer (or a handwashing station) to accompany portable toilets. Additionally, if construction is ongoing at night, then your restroom facilities should be contained “in an open area that is well illuminated.”
By following this best practice for sanitary and lighting, you can reduce the risk of health or safety issues to optimize the health of all construction workers on your job site.
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