A labor group has urged the government to forbid employers nationwide from requiring women employees to wear high-heeled shoes at work because it poses danger to their safety and health.
The Alliance of Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines said that the Department of Labor and Employment should issue a policy prohibiting employers to compel women workers from wearing high heels and should also cover not only salesladies but promodizers in supermarkets, waitresses, hotel and restaurant receptionists and flight attendants as well.
“We received many persistent complaints from salesladies working in department stores and malls that they are in pain walking and standing for long hours performing their jobs in high heel shoes. They also worry that it might have long-term damaged on them. This is a grave concern to their health and safety and so we are asking the DoLE to prohibit employers from requiring their employees to wear high-heeled shoes in doing their work,” ALU-TUCP national executive vice president Gerard Seno said.
“Apart from the pain, working women also complain of injury after slipping, falling and tripping with high-heeled shoes on. This must be stopped. Women workers should not be compelled to put on high-heeled shoes against their will. They should not be exposed to any harm and danger at all times,” Seno said.
The government has no existing regulation that governs the wearing of high-heeled shoes in the workplace and gave the discretion to employers. Thus, women working under the company policy have no choice but to comply and endure the agony for long periods.
“For fear of censure from supervisors and lack of genuine grievance mechanism in the workplace amid numerous anecdotal accidents involving high heel shoes, women in the circumstances are powerless–most of which are contractualized workers and have no union to represent them. They just endure the pain for the entire duration of their shift and have no choice but to comply with company policy for the entire duration of their contracts against their will,” Seno said.
Seno said they also urge the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to create a regulation outlawing schools from requiring female students to wear high heel shoes particularly those taking up hospitality and guest relations courses and training.
Researchers from the University of Aberdeen in the United Kingdom found out that ‘skeletally immature’ adolescents who wear high-heeled are most likely to suffer postural disorders affecting head positioning, the back, pelvis and knee.