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High heels and workplace dress codes

A joint report has been published by the House of Commons Petitions Committee and the Women and Equalities Committee called High heels and workplace dress codes.

A petition was signed by more than 150,000 people requesting it to be made illegal for employers to require female staff to wear high heels whilst at work.

The report commented that certain dress code requirements make some female workers feel uncomfortable and sexualised by their employer, and that requiring female workers to wear high heels is damaging not only to their health, but also their wellbeing.

The report makes recommendations in the following three areas:

  • That the government should review this area of the law;
  • That more effective remedies should be available against employers who breach the law (including injunctions against potentially discriminatory dress codes); and
  • That detailed guidance and awareness campaigns targeted at employers and workers should be developed.

The existing ACAS guidance on dress codes was criticised in evidence, and the report recommends that the government work with ACAS to publish updated guidance by July 2017.

Should you require assistance with drafting or updating your company’s dress code policy please call Hannah Belton at our Carmarthen office on 01267 493130.