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Government promises action on workplace dress codes and high heels

On 6 March 2017, the e-petition on workplace dress codes and high heels was discussed in the House of Commons.  This follows the case in 2015 of Nicola Thorp who was sent home from work without pay for the day for wearing flat shoes instead of high heels.

It was advised that the government is taking, or has already taken, the following action:

  • It is developing guidance for employers, working closely with Acas, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) and the Health and Safety Executive.
  • The EHRC has already taken action to raise awareness of discriminatory dress code practices on social media and is looking more generally at how to sharpen and improve its enforcement work.
  • It expects certain sectors: hotels and tourism, travel and airlines, temporary agencies, corporate services, retail and hospitality, to review their dress codes, if they have not already done so.
  • It is looking at how it can improve employees’ awareness and understanding of the legal protections available to them and how better to enforce them.
  • In order to assist the government in spotting and responding to discriminatory dress code practices, the Equality Advisory Support Service has agreed to refer any reports of dress code issues to the EHRC to consider further action.

MLR are holding a series of free employment workshops.  The June workshops will look at Dress Codes and Workplace Appearance.  For more information and to book please click here