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May13

Dress Code

We have a couple ladies wearing yoga pants and sport bras with tank tops over, short skirts and low v-necks. Several times I have approached them to explain that does not meet our dress code standards. One of them addressed that I need to show her a Nevada Law that prohibited those outfits at work. Please advise.

There is no federal or state mandated dress code policy for all employees. Dress codes and grooming policies are at the discretion of the employer.

There are federal and Nevada laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of age, disability, gender identity/expression, national origin, pregnancy, race religion, sex, and sexual orientation. Thus, a dress code policy cannot discriminate against protected characteristics and an employer may need to make an exception to its policy to reasonably accommodate an individual’s personal beliefs. For example, an employer is within its rights to prohibit head gear (i.e. hats, head scarves, doo rags) in the workplace. But, assuming the restriction is not due to safety, a Muslim employee requesting to wear a headscarf in the workplace in accordance with her religious beliefs must be allowed to do so.

It sounds like there is probably not a protected reason for your employees violating your dress code and your employees are just being difficult. In this case, it’s best to put your dress code policy in writing if you haven’t already.

In making the policy, consider your company’s culture, type of work performed, and any safety restrictions. Make sure the policy is clear on what constitutes unacceptable attire and the consequences for violating the policy. If you have a disciplinary process in place then make sure it’s mentioned.

Communicate the new policy to all staff. If you already have a policy in place, then redistribute it as a reminder to all employees and communicate the importance of all employees following the policy.

Most importantly, remember to enforce the policy uniformly and consistently with all employees. Follow your normal disciplinary process i.e. verbal warning, written warning, suspension and ultimately termination. Usually, when employees see that you’re enforcing the policy they will start to follow it.

Remember, even though there may be no law mandating your employees to dress a certain way, employers have the authority to set dress codes. The next time the employee demands you show her a law prohibiting her attire meet with her privately and discuss the dress code policy. Make sure she is aware that noncompliance will result in disciplinary action. Follow through on your warning.

HTH!

This entry was posted on Saturday, May 13th, 2017 at 7:12 pm and is filed under
Workplace Management.
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