A Salford student has put forward a ‘big idea’ in hopes of getting women’s only and non-binary swimming and gym sessions at the university’s sports centre.

A ‘big idea’ is a system implemented by the student union at Salford University, giving people a chance to put forward an idea that they want to do to change in the University. If the idea gains 25 or more votes in favour it will then go to the Union Council for debate on how to take it forward.

Hatty Ruddick, 21, decided to put forward this big idea based on her own experiences in the gym where she says some of her friends have had negative experiences with it being so male-orientated.

She said: “I decided to submit this idea because this is something that affects a lot of me and my friends.”

However, some seem to be opposed to the idea of women and non-binary only slots at the gym.

Bradley Morgan, another student, commented: “Can we allocate space for men only? I don’t mean it in a disrespectful way, but if we’re trying to reach equality and respect amongst people then why be exclusive towards women and non-binary?

“It just baffles me how they want to create an equal atmosphere and for everyone to have the same access etc and comfortability. But they try to do so by separation.”

The opposition from people tends to come from the fear of separation creating more inequalities.

In response to this, Hattie says: “it is just about making that environment easier to access. It’s not saying that this should be it all the time”.Shape.com surveyed 68.8% of women have said they experienced unnecessary staring 65.7 per cent have had comments about their appearance.

Daley O’Neil the front of house manager of the sports centre said they are constantly trying to create spaces for people so they feel comfortable and encourage more people to use them.

In regards to starting up women’s and non-binary swimming and gym slots, the centre says it is always looking to break down barriers in areas of the Salford community.

Last week it ran a trans-exclusive swim as a part of ‘This Girl Can’ week and will offer regular women’s only sessions in January.

The big idea currently has 19 likes and 3 dislikes.

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