Women-only locker plans for GRU unit abandoned

Published: Monday, January 13, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 13, 2003 at 12:17 a.m.
City officials have scrapped plans to build a women-only locker and shower room at GRU's water distribution facility after figuring it would cost almost $35,000 to build shower stalls that nobody would use.
Employees in GRU's water distribution unit work with heavy equipment, digging ditches and laying water lines in streets - jobs that historically have been filled by men.
Despite efforts in recent years to recruit females, the city still doesn't have any women in its water distribution unit.
In the next three to five years, GRU hopes to close some of its downtown facilities, which will move to a new service center in east Gainesville. GRU General Manager Mike Kurtz said the new service center will have gender-equivalent facilities.
And if a female worker was hired now, there are locker and shower facilities across the street "within easy walking distance," Kurtz said.
He said the decision isn't meant as a slight against women. "I don't want to be insensitive to the issues of bathroom parity," he said.
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