A new public pool in Auburn has installed privacy curtains so Muslim women can swim without being seen by other pool users.

The lightweight curtain runs around the glass walls of the 25-metre program pool where female-only swimming sessions are held for two hours each Sunday. Pool staff can draw the curtain to block the view into pool when the sessions are held, reports Courier Mail.

Belgravia Leisure, which operates the refurbished council-run facility, says the curtain was installed to overcome cultural barriers and encourage Muslim women to use the pool.

General manager, Richard McIntosh, said it was a move to make the pool accessible for all cultural groups.

“There was a lot of research done prior to construction and we identified that they were user groups that we wanted to accommodate,” he said.

“Traditionally that core population group that would use the pool with the blinds closed would have to come after hours or at the earliest or latest possible times.

“Having the blinds means they can use it in the middle of the day and still have full access.”

Auburn Council general manager Malcolm Ryan supports the move.

“There was a very high demand for female-only classes at the aquatic centre before redevelopment to cater for the differing modesty requirements,” he said.

“These classes were very popular but due to the centre only having one pool before redevelopment, the high demand wasn’t being met.

“With the installation of curtains at the program pool, the Auburn Ruth Everuss Aquatic Centre is inclusive to the whole community at all times and can cater to any requirement, without it impacting on the rest of the centre.”

Great move! Should more public pools do something similar?

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Image via Courier Mail

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  • so all woman can go and feel like they have privacy and be a bit more relaxed but what about the men? they might like their own privacy too? it is good that many more women feel comfortable using the pool now though


  • Yes, as long as all women can attend sessions, it’s a good idea.


  • I think it is a good idea – they have obviously researched and the need is there so a good idea to implement it.


  • If there was a demand for it then it makes really good business sense to implement it.


  • Sure is a great move I think and yes, more public pools should do something similar when there is the demand. I agree, that this shouldn’t be for just Muslim women, but for other women who prefer these female only classes as well.


  • It is OK as long as it isn’t exclusively for Muslim women. All women should be allowed the benefit of privacy if they desire it. It may encourge a lot more women to learn to swim.


  • If there are enough women using this facility and there is a need for it, then no problem.


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