This sounds so ridiculous!
According to Evening Standard/Metro UK, a young lady claims she was sent home from a corporate receptionist job in central London without pay after refusing to wear high heels. Nicola Thorp arrived for her first day at PwC’s Embankment offices in flat shoes but claims she was then told by a supervisor that she must come to work wearing two to four inch heels.
The 27-year-old, who was employed as a temp by PwC's outsourced reception firm Portico, alleges she was “laughed at” when she complained that the demand was discriminatory as men were allowed to wear flat shoes.
PwC said the dress code was not its policy and that the supervisor worked for Portico. She says she was sent home without pay after refusing to go out and buy a pair of heels. Ms Thorp, who lives in Hackney, also claims that she was told to wear make-up for the receptionist role and was supplied with a colour chart of “acceptable shades”.
She told the Standard: “When I arrived on site, I was turned away from work because I was not wearing high heels. I expressed my confusion as to why, and they explained that flat shoes are not part of their dress code for women.
“The supervisor told me that I would be sent home without pay unless I went to the shop and bought a pair of two to four inch heels. I refused and was sent home. When I pointed out that my male colleague was allowed to work in flat shoes, and that I felt that I was being discriminated against, I was laughed at. I left feeling upset and confused.”
Ms Thorp said she called an employment rights helpline for advice but was told that employers have the right to impose a formal dress code in the workplace. She has now launched an online petition to try to make it illegal for companies to force women to wear high heels to work.
“I started this petition because I was outraged that in 2016, employers still have the right to make women wear heels against their will in the workplace. A woman deserves the choice to wear smart heels or smart flats, whichever is more comfortable or practical for work,” she said.
The petition demands that the government "make it illegal for a company to require women to wear high heels at work".
She writes: "It’s still legal in the UK for a company to require female members of staff to wear high heels at work against their will. Dress code laws should be changed so that women have the option to wear flat formal shoes at work if they wish. Current formal work dress codes are outdated and sexist."
As with all Parliament.uk petitions, if it reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will send a response. At 100,000 signatures, the petition will be considered for a debate in Parliament.