Hundreds of thousands of people shared her post.
via Flickr user (cc) Paolo Gamba
GOOD has often reported on the harsh working conditions and low wages that many servers are forced to deal with in the United States. Now, a recent news story out of Canada shows that the U.S. isn’t the only place that treats its servers poorly. Recently, a Facebook user shared a disturbing photo on Facebook of her anonymous friend’s bloody feet after a night of serving tables at a chain restaurant in Alberta, Canada. The photo calls attention to sexist dress code policies that force women to wear painful high-heel pumps while men are allowed to work in comfortable shoes.
Here’s Gavins’ full post:
To anyone I know who eats at [REDACTED]
Their policy is still that female staff wear heels unless medically restricted, my friends feet were bleeding to the point she lost a toe nail and she was still discouraged and berated by the shift manager for changing into flats (specifically told that heels would be required on her next shift the following day).
In addition, the female staff have to purchase a uniform/dress at the cost of 30$ while male staff can dress themselves in black clothing from their own closets (and are not required to wear heels).
Sexist, archaic requirements and totally disgusting policy.
I have many friends in the service industry and know loads of ladies who still earn great tips without having to sacrifice their comfort while serving. I’ll choose to continue supporting those establishments.
Update - Joey’s also has unpaid training shifts which is illegal under the Alberta Labour Laws (signed waiver or not). Seedy shit! —
Even though the server’s socks were soaked in blood and she was missing a toenail, Gavins’ friend was told by the restaurant she’d have to wear the same shoes to work the next day. According to a spokesperson for the restaurant, the high-heel policy was the result of a miscommunication. “There is no minimum height when it comes to our shoe policy,” she told ATTN. “Shoes range from black dress flats, wedges, and heels. For those employees wearing heels, we require the heel height to be no higher than [two and a half inches].”
Although there may have been a miscommunication at the store level about policy, for a restaurant to demand their female employees work in painful uniforms and to not require the same of men is sexist. Also, regardless of company dress code policy, to force a woman with injured feet to wear painful shoes to work when she can easily wear something more comfortable is despicable.
UPDATE: SINCE THIS ARTICLE WAS ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED, ALBERTA HAS TAKEN MAJOR STEPS TO UPDATE THIS LAW.
More on Good.is