Recently, the McIver’s Ladies Baths in Sydney came under fire for their (since removed) policy stating “only transgender women who’ve undergone a gender reassignment surgery are allowed entry”. The policy was seemingly in defiance of New South Wales’ anti-discrimination and sex discrimination acts.
Managed since 1922 by the Randwick and Coogee Ladies Amateur Swimming Club, the baths are a haven for women and the last remaining women’s-only seawater pool in Australia.
Just over 100 public ocean pools sit on Australia’s rocky coast, most in New South Wales. Segregated baths gave women a place to experience the water, prohibited from most beach access until “continental” (or mixed gender) bathing was introduced in the early 20th century.