Dublin needs public toilets


A chara, – I was delighted to read Kathy Sheridan’s piece on public toilets (“Public toilets are key to dignity, health and wellbeing”, Opinion & Analysis, April 7th).

Last October I presented a resolution to South Dublin County Council (SDCC) calling for the installation of “two self-cleaning outdoor public toilets on the high streets of each of the seven local electoral areas of the county and to liaise with the city of Paris if any advice on the matter needed”.

Around 15 of the 40 SDCC county councillors present spoke in favour for reasons that can be found in Kathy Sheridan’s article, while the rest either deferred to costings or were opposed as they said that public toilets smell and attract anti-social behaviour and addicts.

Ms Sheridan’s article brings new information to the debate by highlighting the imbalance in the provision of facilities for women and men.

She asks if €182,000 a year is too much to spend. Such a budget would pay the once-off up-front costs of the installation of self-cleaning public toilets and should be compared to what local authorities spend on other essential infrastructure such as roads, footpaths, tree maintenance, parks and playgrounds. Given that €182,000 is less than the price of a house, one public toilet at this price for every 25,000 people or so is reasonable. The city of Paris, where I lived for a number of years, has managed to install hundreds. Is there another city in the EU that does not have a network of public toilets? – Is mise,





Local Electoral Area,

Clondalkin, Co Dublin.