You may not know this, but I have another great passion besides clothes – British politics. And no, these two are not mutually exclusive. Just because you love fashion and care about looking good does not mean that you don’t care about serious issues too. But I digress. I love it when our political system actually works and democracy is fully evident. Tomorrow, of course, is a big day for democracy (no matter which side of the debate you are on) with the EU Referendum vote taking place.
In another example of democracy in action, Nicola Thorp’s parliamentary petition on making it illegal to wear high heels at work (which has over 142,000 signatures) has now been allocated inquiry time by the Commons Petitions Committee. Any petition over 100,000 signatures is granted parliamentary time.
You may remember that Ms Thorp was the temporary receptionist sent home for not wearing shoes with the required ‘two to four inch heel’.
PricewaterhouseCoopers (who she was temping for) have since issued an honest statement expressing their embarrassment about the situation and the steps they are taking to rectify it. Interestingly, Portico the agency in question, have been suspiciously silent on the issue.
Ms Thorp was wearing shoes that were perfectly adequate for an office environment. It begs the question, why can’t women be seen as smart and professional wearing flat shoes? Of course, they can, and I believe every woman has an ‘ideal’ heel height – it’s just a matter of finding it. With so many heel styles and height options available these days, there’s an option that will work for almost any woman in almost any work environment (see my blog post on wearable heels for more on this topic).
The Petitions Committee will examine the issue and hear oral evidence from witnesses, working with the Women and Equalities Committee. Unfortunately the deadline for public comments has passed but click here to see the comments and experiences other women have shared. And check back on this page for dates and details of the oral sessions.
Have you ever been forced to wear high heels at work?