Lawmaker Wants Businesses To Open Restrooms To Customers -

Lawmaker Wants Businesses To Open Restrooms To Customers

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SC Representative Robert Williams says businesses should open up restroom facilities to customers.

Williams introduced the bill and says it is currently in committee. He says it is a courtesy for customers and not intended for the general public.

"I think it would be advantageous for retailers to realize that folks need to use the restroom if they're out shopping," Williams explained.

Small business owners in downtown Greenville say the measure goes too far.

Deb Ayers Agnew at Ayers Leather Shop says it's a difficult issue.

"It's a very unfortunate situation for a small merchant to deal with this, because we certainly sympathize with the customer," Agnew said.

She says most small stores have restrooms in the back stock room. It's a liability if a customer is injured, and leaves extra merchandise open to theft.

"You have to take someone off of the floor to go with the person and kind of supervise that everything that you have in the back is secure," Agnew explained, "just to do a favor for a customer that's not always a customer."

Store owners in Greenville say this could become a big problem during special events. With so many people downtown, it's a challenge to know who is an actual customer.  

They point to public restrooms as the answer to this bathroom battle.

This legislation has a long way to go before anything is set in stone. Representative Williams says the bill is still being discussed in committee.

According to online records, Williams has filed a similar bill for the past two legislative sessions. It died in committee both times.




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