Sen. Peggy Lehner testifies at statehouse for ‘Matthew’s Law’

Ohio Statehouse News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — A Miami Valley mother is one step closer to providing better care for her differently-abled adult son in public restrooms.

She was at the statehouse this morning, where lawmakers listened to testimony backing a bill that would require new construction projects to be equipped with adult changing stations.

Today State Senator Peggy Lehner of Kettering testified on SB 249 which would be known as Matthew’s Law.

“Currently many adults with special needs are not able to use handicap bathrooms because they are unable to fit securely on baby changing stations. And must be changed on the bathroom floor,” Sen. Lehner said.

The bill would be named after Jennifer Corcoran’s son, Matthew. He has severe hydrocephalus or fluid on the brain, therefore, needs to be changed when he uses the bathroom. According to Corcoran, the biggest challenges are limiting Matthew’s trips to the zoo, ballparks and restaurants.

READ MORE: Huber Heights mother crusading for new state law that would help her adult son

With tax credits and waivers, Lehner said the bill wouldn’t burden businesses with new construction, but rather give adults with disabilities the dignity and inclusion they deserve.

“There’s a least 100,000 families within Ohio that are effected by this challenge and we need this change so that we can have the very basics of a restroom available to us,” Corcoran said.

She now awaits a second hearing for the Chair of the Senate’s transportation, commerce, and workforce committee to hear more testimony–this time her own.

“I’m not going to stop until it happens,” she said.

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