Access to public restrooms is a human issue, not a homeless issue, and having a safe place to use the restroom is a vital means of basic dignity for all, including those living on the streets.
After five years of hard work and collaboration between Think Dignity volunteers, Basic Dignity Campaign partners, the City of San Diego, and many more, San Diego received two additional 24/7 public access flushing restrooms, the Portland Loos. This increased the total number of 24/7 restrooms from three to five.
At this time, there is only one Loo in operation, located at 14th street, near Petco Park.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Think Dignity’s role and involvement?
Please refer to our Basic Dignity Page.
How were the locations determined?
Civic San Diego (formerly CCDC), was tasked by City Council to conduct outreach to businesses and residents for consensus on the locations. CCDC held several meetings with the East Village Association and other local community groups to determine the locations. Think Dignity was at these meetings as an attendee. CCDC submitted the final report to the City which included cost and location recommendations based on the feedback from the various groups/individuals.
Who is in charge of maintaining the Loos?
The City of San Diego, specifically the Department of Parks and Recreation, is in charge of repairing the Loos. The City of San Diego pays a third party to perform maintenance on all public restrooms, including the Loos.
Who was in charge of the costs related to the Loos?
In 2013, former Mayor, Bob Filner, added funding for the two restrooms in East Village for a total of $400K in his budget recommendation, which was approved. Separate funding is allocated for maintenance of public restrooms, and maintenance of the Loos falls into that budget.
How does having the restrooms help?
While public restrooms alone do not eliminate the public defecation issues in downtown San Diego, additional access to public restrooms is a step in the right direction for both cleaning up the streets of downtown, as well as providing access to take care of a basic human need.
Prior to the Loos, there were only three 24/7 restrooms downtown. The Grand Jury of San Diego issued a report in 2015 that re-stated a need for increased access to public restrooms for Comic Con attendees, San Diego tourists, as well as those living on the streets.
The continued support of our donors is monumental in allowing Think Dignity to continue our advocacy work.