Workplaces 'becoming more lookist'


Workplaces 'becoming more lookist'
A new survey has suggested that British workplaces are increasingly seeing various forms of "lookism".

The poll by recruitment news website Personnel Today discovered that workers can be teased over a range of different things, including hair colour, height, weight and accents.

A significant proportion of employees said they believe it is fine to tease colleagues about such factors, with 81 per cent stating so about ginger hair, 75 per cent citing blonde hair and 72 per cent voting for baldness.

Alan Chalmers, an employment partner with legal services firm DLA Piper, said that while there are no laws covering discrimination on the basis of hair colour and other appearance-related issues, some of the teasing uncovered by the survey could fall under present legislation.

"For example, teasing about a person's age could amount to harassment under the age regulations and teasing a blonde woman for being dense - or commenting on breast size - could be sexual harassment," he warned.

Last month, employment law firm Consult GEE claimed that employers could be missing out by basing recruitment decisions on factors such as weight - a practice that is outlawed in US cities such as San Francisco and Washington, reports

Related categories: HR / Recruitment.

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