There’s no question that sexist workplace policies are harmful, but one woman just posted a photo on Facebook that proves just how damaging they can be. Nicola Gavins shared a photo of her friend’s blood-soaked socks and stained shoes after she worked a training shift at a Joey restaurant in Edmonton, Alberta.
In the description of this cringeworthy photo, Gavins says that the restaurant’s dress-code policy dictates that all female staffers must wear high heels unless medically restricted. She wrote, "My friend’s feet were bleeding to the point she lost a toenail, 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)." According to CBC News, when the unnamed woman told her manager that her feet hurt at the end of her first training shift, she was told to invest in a better pair of heels. By the end of her second shift, she was ready to quit. "My feet were bleeding and swollen. I lost a couple of toenails. I was just in tears," she told CBC News. Workplace dress codes have been making headlines a lot lately, with many outraged over how these policies put women at a disadvantage. The hope is that questioning these policies will bring about change. Joey told BuzzFeed Canada that while it "did at one time mandate 1-inch heels," the food chain's shoe guidelines changed in March, because of employee feedback. “What was clear from this incident was that there were outdated training materials circulating in our stores that caused confusion and miscommunication, and we take full ownership of that,” Britt Innes, vice president of marketing for Joey, explained. “We should have ensured all outdated training materials were destroyed.”