Are Dorm Bathrooms Unsanitary?

Amanda Bernocco Staff Writer

bathroom1

Alex Parker

 

bathroom

Alex Parker

Resident students are voicing their concerns about the unsanitary bathrooms in the dorms on campus. However, Jennifer Fuoco, director of Residence Life, said that the dorms, including the bathrooms, are a healthy environment for students.

“The bathrooms—I can go off about [that],” said a freshman Dance major who dorms in Queens Hall. “There is hair all over the place, the toilet is always clogged, girls leave their used tampons in the shower and people leave their soap, toothpaste and panties all over,” she added about the bathroom, which is on the second floor in the building.

Some students reported similar descriptions of bathrooms in other buildings as well. “All the showers have hair in them and the toilets are never flushed,” said Victoria Brady, a sophomore Psychology major, who used to live in Brookville Hall but now lives off campus.

William Kirker, director of the Facilities Department, thinks that this is because people are using the bathrooms more frequently than they are being cleaned. “They’re [the bathrooms] cleaned daily. They get cleaned and disinfected every day. We’re not there 24 hours a day, so when people make a mess of them people may think they are not clean, but they are,” he said.

Fuoco added that, “When there is any damage done in the residence halls that exceeds every day wear and tear, the community is financially responsible for that damage. This semester, there have not been any community bills due to bathroom cleanliness.”

Although many students say the bathrooms are unclean, custodial staff, according to Fuoco, cleans them daily. “Every night at 8 or 9 p.m., I see someone clean- ing the bathroom, and it takes her a really long time,” said Deanna Albro, a freshman Music Education major.

Albro added that she felt that last semester was a little worse when it came to the cleanliness of the bathrooms in the dorms; the Residence Assistants (RAs) on her floor held a meeting and told the residents to clean up after themselves. “It got a little better, but not much,” she said about the bath- room on her floor of Queens Hall.

Muniz, who felt the Queens Hall bathrooms were not clean, said, however, the buildings are overall clean, and added that “it’s just the residents [the students who use the bathrooms are messy].”

“We encourage residents to treat the bathroom on their floor or wing just as they would their bathroom at home. Most residents are respectful of their neighbors and keep their community clean,” Fuoco said. “We also encourage our resident students to take an active role in the upkeep of their community and to let staff know if they see anything that needs to be addressed,” said Fuoco.

Although the residents said that the messiness of some of the other students that share their bathrooms are a big part of the problem, they have reported more significant health concerns, including bugs and mold.

“Queens Hall has a stink bug infestation,” said Brady. Stink bugs are a dark colored, triangular bug that emits a strong odor when threatened and are not harmful to humans.

However, according to Kirker, to the Facilities Department’s knowledge there isn’t a problem with the cleanliness of the dorms.“ If they [the students] are saying that they are not clean, I’d like to know where because they get cleaned by professionals every day,” he added.

The Health Sciences Department and Nursing Department declined to comment about the health issues raised by students living in the dorms because they don’t go in the residence halls. The Nassau County Department of Health also declined The Pioneer’s request for comment.

According to the New York State Dormitory Authority, after they build the dorms whatever goes on in them is the responsibility of the university.

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