Transcript for Company That Sent Woman Home for Not Wearing Heels Broke the Law
my shoes for this one. High heels in the workplace. A woman was sent home -- my toes do not have a pedicure. Sent hem for pay for not wearing high heels. Decided to fight back and has a country behind her with a dress code she felt was discriminatory. Reporter: From Olivia pope to Claire Underwood. To "Devil wears Prada." That's all. Reporter: They're the must have accessory for powerful women. A pair of high heels. But now one woman is taking a stand in her flats. I show up in a black suit and flat black shoes. Reporter: Nicollette sent home from her job because she showed up in shoes without a minimum two-inch heel. I was there for all of about ten minutes, pointed to a male colleague and said, well, he's wearing flat shoes rut. Reporter: Outraged she left and started a petition, six months later she was calling on lawmakers to keep companies from demanding women wear heels at work. Professional women sounding off on Twitter defiantly posting pictures in flats. That petition gaining more than 150,000 signatures. Now lawmakers in Britain saying the company who fired nicollela broke the law. I had the choice of either will I get paid for a day's work, you know, let go of my principles or stick to it and I'm really glad now that I did. Rebecca, and the editor in chief of "Glamour" magazine joins news. Give them a big welcome here. Thank you so much for that. All right, that happened in the uk. What about here? Can employers do this? Well, legally you might want to explain the legal implications, but fundamentally what they decided in England was that, no, they cannot. But there are some nuances to that that are worth knowing. It's kind of surprising, I think, that employers can enforce dress codes and they can ask women to wear heels, but men have to be asked in the same environment to adhere to the same strict dress code so, for example in a place where women have to wear heels maybe men have to groom their beard, wear suits. Employers have talked about this. There have been suits in the United States and ultimately it comes down in favor of the employer as long as both genders are treated equally. There seems to be a little bit of a gray area when it comes to the dress code. Legitimate so say, for instance, no one can wear a tank top or flip-flops because that's gender neutral. What's not tear and what women objected to the idea that enmen, you can come in fundamentally anything you want but, women, you have to have a particular heel height. The woman was working a nine-hour shift on her feet for a lot of the day. I'm wearing flats in solidarity with her today and tell me that I'm not going to be able to do my job, of course, I can be just as professional in flats as I can in a four-inch heel. That's true. What is it -- what is it about women, high heels and I have to say this, when I first started working here, at "Good morning America," coming from ESPN from the sports world, I would wear flats. And my bosses didn't give me pressure. Women watching were -- they were like why aren't you wearing heels. Felt more professional. I do think a little bit of that is going away. Certainly you're completely right. Has been this idea that if you wanted to dress professionally as a woman in the workplace you had to wear a heel. Yes, women do dress for other women. But what I see with young women is that they're saying, listen, this is about my personal style. Maybe I'm a heel lover. Maybe I'm not but what I put on my body reflects who I am and what I'm comfortable with and I want to be able to express that when I'm at work. You know this, Rebecca. By the way, I love your podcast. Thank you so much. I appreciate that, robin. Dynamic. You speak to that too, Rebecca, a little bit. Well, so much of our work life now is our everything life so what we reflect at work is a reflection of who we are as people. But one of the things I would say to women and to men in the workplace is if you admire your boss dress like your boss, try and think about what the things are that are happening in your workplace. I worked in retail for many years in heels. I know how hard that can be too. Ray, Rebecca, Cindi, thank you very much.
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