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Marks & Spencer gender neutral changing room policy sparks online debate

By Rachel Douglass

26 Aug 2022

Business

Image: Marks & Spencer

Marks & Spencer has become the centre of a heated online discussion after the topic of its gender neutral changing room policy arose on Twitter this week, despite it being in place for almost three years.

It came following the retailer’s response to a complaint from a customer that had asked for confirmation of privacy in the gender neutral format.

A spokesperson for Marks & Spencer responded to the Tweet stating: “In all of our stores, we have fitting rooms located within our womenswear and menswear department and each is made up of individual lockable cubicles to ensure every customer feels comfortable and has the privacy they need.

“While they are mainly used by customers of that gender, as an inclusive retailer and in line with most other retailers, we allow customers the choice of fitting room.”

The hashtag ‘#boycottMarksandSpencer’ began making its rounds on the social media platform, with responses from hundreds of users expressing a divided opinion on the matter.

One Tweet by a user named Tractor Girly read: “I would be happy to #boycottMarksandSpencer because they haven’t considered the feelings of the millions of women who shop there. Seems a bit like misogyny to me. Women will not put up with this anymore. Listen to our concerns. Be a champion of change for the betterment of us.”

Meanwhile, Twitter user Louise LaTran used the hashtag to outline her support of the policy, stating: “Just dropping #boycottMarksandSpencer to say that my experience as a trans woman shopping with M&S has been nothing but a pleasure – their staff/policies really are as super friendly and supportive as the anti-LGBTQ fauxrage today are making out.”

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