The White House seen on April 7, 2015 in Washington.
Brendan Smialowski—AFP/Getty Images
April 8, 2015 9:16 PM EDT

President Obama’s visitors and staffers will have the option of using a gender-neutral restroom, a spokesman announced Wednesday, in a change that comes shortly after an executive order went into effect to ban discrimination against gay and transgender employees at companies that have contracts with the government.

“The White House allows staff and guests to use restrooms consistent with their gender identity, which is in keeping with the administration’s existing legal guidance on this issue and consistent with what is required by the executive order that took effect today for federal contractors,” White House spokesman Jeff Tiller said, Politico reports. The restroom will be located where many White House staffers work, in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building.

The announcement comes at a time when legislatures in several states have already, or are considering, ways to restrict which public restrooms that transgender people are allowed to use. Transgender advocates slam those measures as discriminatory.


Contact us at

Read More From TIME

Related Stories