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Women can no longer be forced to wear high heels in B.C. workplaces

The B.C. government has made good on its promise to follow through on a Green Party motion to ban workplace requirements that force women to wear high heels.

Risks of slipping or falling and possible damage to the feet, legs and back cited as reasons for new rules

B.C. employers can no longer require female staff to wear high heels. (The Associated Press)

The B.C. government has banned workplace requirements that force women to wear high heels. 

A mandatory high-heel dress code "is a workplace health and safety issue," says the release put out by Premier Christy Clark and Labour Minister Shirley Bond.  

"There is a risk of physical injury from slipping or falling, as well as possible damage to the feet, legs and back from prolonged wearing of high heels while at work."

Amendments to the Workers Compensation Act will "ensure that workplace footwear is of a design, construction and material that allows the worker to safely perform their work and ensures that employers cannot require footwear contrary to this standard," said the release.

Bond credits B.C. Green Party Leader Andrew Weaver for initiating the change.

Last month Weaver introduced a bill in the provincial legislature asking for amendments to the Workers Compensation Act to make it illegal for an employer to require different footwear for women than for men.

​According to the statement, WorkSafeBC will develop workplace guidelines around the amended regulation which will be available at the end of this month.