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May27

Wearing Uniform During Breaks

Is it legal for an employer to require employees to wear uniforms during their meal breaks?

Something tells us there is more to this situation than you are revealing.

There is no law that specifically prevents you from requiring employees to wear their uniforms while on meal breaks. This policy is unusual, but it is also very unusual for employees to change out of their uniforms for meal breaks. Obviously, if employees were allowed to change, they would have to do so on thier own time. They would not receive longer meal breaks to change clothes, and could not expect to change clothes while on the clock.

The best practice in HR is to allow employees to do as they wish on their meal breaks, unless there is a valid business reason not to. For example, if a restaurant food server is changing into a skimpy outfit before enjoying her meal where partons can see her, that might be a valid business reason to require employees to wear uniforms during breaks. But if she simply wants to change on her own time so she can have lunch at a fast food restaurant with her boyfriend, it seems very controlling to force her to wear her uniform.

So the answer is, this policy is legal. It may not be wise or fair, but it is legal and you can discipline or terminate any employee who does not comply.

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This entry was posted on Friday, May 27th, 2011 at 6:06 am and is filed under
Human Resources Management.
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