Where are the restrooms? Mobay toilet facilities in need of signs
MoBay toilet facilities in need of signs
Lennox Wallace, public health inspector for the parish of St. James, is calling on the local authorities to install signs that would make people aware of the locations of Montego Bay's public bathrooms which, he says, are readily available for use and in good condition.
"Currently, St James has enough public sanitary conveniences, but the problem that we are having is signage, and we have spoken to the Parish Council about it on numerous occasions. You cannot just expect persons to go into the town and know that they are there," Wallace told THE STAR recently.
"You have a lot of public restrooms at Fort Street, in the Civic Centre, at St Claver's Avenue, and you have another set at Clock (along Barnett Street). No building plan comes to my desk without us signing off on the public facilities for these plazas, and they are there and they are clean, but the signage is not there. Hence, [that is] why persons are not using these facilities," Wallace added.
At present, many persons, including pedestrians and vendors plying their wares in the Second City, relieve themselves along the sides of buildings and on sections of the roadway instead of seeking out the nearest public sanitary facility.
Some vendors with whom THE STAR spoke said they have to relieve themselves wherever it is convenient, due to the distance of some public bathrooms from where they sell their goods. "You find some people pee in a corner, because a man will not go inside another man's business place unless that man knows you, and more time you cannot move to go anywhere," said Delovan Daley, a fruit vendor who plies his trade along King Street.
"All of the vendors, it is Burger King (on St James Street) they go to, and more time they lock the door there. The only way they let you in is if you have a receipt," Daley added.
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"To pay J$50 (to use a facility) is better than to walk up and down ... and how long can you hold it? But the street is always open."
Sophia Gayle, another vendor who sells along Market Street, said: "I know one bathroom is over [at] the Civic Centre, but I don't use it because it so far. Sometimes they are too far from us."
But Wallace believes that more needs to be done to persuade people to use the sanitary facilities, calling it a matter of civic pride.
"You find that these facilities are right there, but the persons go to the side of the facility and urinate. Where is our pride?" Wallace lamented. "To get the general public to use the facilities is an uphill battle, [but] we continue to monitor these facilities as a health department, and we continue to make recommendations to use them."