Local Toilets Strategy
The Council’s Cabinet is to be asked to approve a Local Toilets Strategy for Flintshire at its meeting on Tuesday, 14 May.
The duty to prepare a Local Toilets Strategy as required by The Public Health (Wales) Act 2017 does not require the Council to provide and maintain public toilets directly or provide additional dedicated facilities. However, the strategy does consider how facilities can be provided and accessed, taking account of such things as location, accessibility, type of facilities, frequency of use and the quality of existing sites.
Since 2012, Flintshire County Council has undertaken two separate reviews of toilet provision across the County which showed that isolated facilities regularly attracted anti-social behaviour, which deters people from using them. As a result, the Council has for several years adopted a more enabling approach by promoting the use of existing toilets in Council buildings, such as libraries and Connects Centres which people feel more confident and comfortable with using.
The proposed strategy includes an Action Plan which includes:
- alternative in-house provision (Connects Centres, libraries)
- engagement with the Town and Community Councils to provide facilities
- approaching local businesses to provide facilities
- dedicated stand-alone Council facilities
The Action Plan also identifies the requirement for officers to challenge the need for changes to planning policy and current legislation in relation to toilet provision to allow proposals for facilities to be included within planning conditions.
Cllr. Carolyn Thomas, Cabinet Member for Streetscene and Countryside said:
“In creating the strategy the Council sought the views of a wide range of stakeholders, to gain an understanding of the needs of people and communities across Flintshire. A statutory consultation for the proposed Local Toilets Strategy also ran between 4 February and 26 April this year and received 195 responses.”
“This is another strategy that the Council has been tasked with producing in times of Austerity and cuts that has no extra funding from Government to improve existing facilities or increase provision which residents have naturally requested during the consultation.”