Fri June 15, 2012
Gender-Neutral housing at UB
The University at Buffalo appears to be one of the first campuses in the Buffalo area to implement Gender-Neutral Housing. This will allow couples of the opposite sex to now live together in campus housing.
"We would have request from time to time from students who were looking for housing options that didn't restrict them from living with individuals who identified either as male or female," said Brian Haggerty, UB's senior associate director of campus living.
Haggerty worked on this transition from traditional housing where male and females live in separate dorms. But now gender-neutral housing will allow them to live together.
"Having housing assignment policies that only allow you to live with someone who is of the same sex as you is restrictive, so we felt it was the right thing to do to broaden the options," said Haggerty.
This also opens up the opportunity for gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender students to live with friends of the opposite sex.
"They are all very grateful and they're all excited to live in it," said Trey Utholcz, a trans-gender student. He just graduated from UB's School of Social work and worked closely with Haggerty to help make these changes in student housing.
"I hope that UB continues to progress in the matter they have," said Utholcz.
It was Utholcz who explained in his thesis how some students experience homelessness and that many members of the LGBT community end up sleeping on couches in dorm rooms where they felt the most comfortable.
This is a pilot program. The new housing plan will be established on two floors at the Ellicott Complex and some additional apartments at Hadley and Creekside Villages.