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Cast a vote for Canada’s best public Powder Rooms

by NationTalk on March 6, 20091155 Views

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TORONTO, March 5 – Last year, Canadians helped the Powder Room – a national, fully bilingual educational program for individuals with overactive bladder – locate the country’s best public restrooms at www.powderroom.ca. Out of more than 450 restrooms rated, 10 winners across the country earned the “Powder Room Seal of Approval” and received a unique silver plaque, along with being showcased prominently on the interactive Cross-Canada Powder Room Map.The Powder Room asks Canadians to once again log-on to the Powder Room website to add, rate and comment on public restrooms across the country. The highest-rated facilities will receive the “Powder Room Seal of Approval” this spring, guiding travellers to the best pit-stops in time for road-trip season. A new category has also been added this year – the Powder Room “Fan Favourite” will be awarded to the restroom that receives the highest number of votes overall.

“Powder Room Seal of Approval” recipient, Crystal Dorey, Aboriginal Interpretive Program Coordinator at Glooscap Heritage Centre in Truro, Nova Scotia, notes that the Centre “received a great response from the community and local media when the Glooscap Heritage Centre won the award last year.” She says, “Quite a few visitors stopped by to check out our restrooms because they had heard about us in the news. Since then, we’ve added some decorative touches, like photos of Nova Scotia. Of course, we’ve also continued to keep the facilities clean for our visitors!”

This popular campaign has already enabled establishments to demonstrate how dedicated they are to providing restrooms that live up to the quality that their visitors expect – a trait that is important to the Powder Room. “The Powder Room Seal of Approval is a great badge of honour for Yorkdale,” says Anthony Casalanguida, General Manager of Yorkdale Shopping Centre in North York, Ontario, which received top honours for Ontario last year. “Some of our recent upgrades – like low-flush toilets, leather padding on infant changing tables and environmentally-friendly paper towel dispensers – are examples of the little things we do to make the experience a positive one.”

Using Google mapping technology, the Powder Room developed the Cross-Canada Powder Room Map in response to a consumer survey that revealed that one in 10 Canadian women limit travel plans because they are concerned about the need to find a bathroom(1). Fran Stewart, Nurse Continence Advisor at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, explains, “It is extremely common for individuals with overactive bladder, and other bladder problems, to use the “toilet mapping” technique – planning out where they will use the restroom before they leave the house.”

Restroom evaluations on the Cross-Canada Powder Room Map follow a five-star rating system based on accessibility, line-ups, cleanliness, location and overall decor. Establishments that have a Powder Room worth bragging about are encouraged to tell their visitors about the Cross-Canada Powder Room Map and encourage them to vote. Flyers can be downloaded at www.powderroom.ca.

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Overactive bladder affects approximately 12 to 18 per cent of Canadians. Having the sudden “urge” to urinate, even when the bladder is not full, is the primary symptom of overactive bladder and not, as some believe, incontinence (urine leakage).(2,3)

In a person with overactive bladder, the bladder muscle begins to contract while the bladder is filling with urine, rather than when the bladder is full. The individual experiences a sudden need to go to the restroom, which can be difficult to manage and inconvenient, especially when someone is in a business meeting or travelling.

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The Powder Room is a national and fully bilingual educational program developed in collaboration with Canadian healthcare professionals. The program works to improve the quality of life of individuals with overactive bladder by helping them to understand, manage and treat the condition. For more information on overactive bladder, visit www.powderroom.ca. The Powder Room has been made possible through an education grant from Astellas Pharma Canada, Inc., a leader in the field of urology.

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For further information: Communications MECA, Lindsay Peterson, 1-866-337-3362, Email: lpeterson@meca.ca; Rene Samulewitsch, Communications MECA, 1-866-337-3362, Email: rsamulewitsch@meca.ca

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