A London receptionist was sent home from work after refusing to wear high heels, it has emerged.
Temp worker Nicola Thorp, 27, from Hackney, arrived at finance company PwC to be told she had to wear shoes with a “2in to 4in heel”.
When she refused and complained that male colleagues weren’t asked to do the same, she was sent home without pay.
Outsourcing firm Portico said it set the uniform rules for staff supplied to PwC but will now review its guidelines.
Ms Thorp said she would have struggled to work a nine-hour shift in high heels and had asked to wear the smart flat shoes she had worn to the office in Embankment – but was told she should go and buy a pair of heels.
“I said ‘if you can give me a reason as to why wearing flats would impair me to do my job today, then fair enough’, but they couldn’t,” Ms Thorp told BBC Radio London.
“I was expected to do a nine-hour shift on my feet escorting clients to meeting rooms. I said I just won’t be able to do that in heels.”
Ms Thorp says she asked if a man would be expected to do the same shift in heels, and was laughed at.
She has since set up a petition calling for the law to be changed so women cannot be forced to wear high heels to work. It has had more than 7,000 signatures.
As the law stands, employers can dismiss staff who fail to live up to “reasonable” dress code demands, as long as they’ve been given enough time to buy the right shoes and clothes.
They can set up different codes for men and women, as long as there’s an “equivalent level of smartness”.
“I don’t hold anything against the company necessarily because they are …read more
Source:: BBC world news feed