‘Premier Mom’ institutes new dress code at Ontario legislature

Anecdotally, at least, it seems that workplace dress codes have become a thing of the past.

Not for those, however, who work for Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne at Queen's Park.

This week, according to the Toronto Star, HR managers sent out a memo to Wynne staffers spelling out what is acceptable attire for the summer months.

Dressing down is in fact business casual dress as described below. Be casual, rather than sloppy

..Jeans are permitted if not tattered and well worn. Polo shirts, casual shirts and T-shirts are acceptable.

...tailored walking shorts are acceptable … shorts that are perceived as distracting or revealing are not.

Miniskirts/dresses and dresses with spaghetti straps are not permitted.

Casual dresses and skirts with appropriate hemlines are acceptable. Dresses that are sleeveless but do not leave the shoulders bare are acceptable.

Bare midriffs as a result of low-ride pants or crop tops are not permitted.

Tank tops, muscle shirts, camisoles, halter tops, spaghetti straps, and crop tops are not permitted. No bare shoulders.

The folks at the Star are appropriately dubbing Kathleen Wynne as 'Premier Mom.'

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Dress codes for members of legislative assemblies are common. In most legislatures across the country men have to wear dress shirts and neckties. It's part of the parliamentary protocol.

In some provinces there are also strict dress codes for the press gallery.

But, Liberal insider and Sun News personality Warren Kinsella — who has spent a lot of time around both Parliament Hill and Queen's Park — said Wynne's edict is a little different.

"Haven't heard about anyone ever trying this one on before," he told Yahoo! Canada News.

"I'd say it's an ill-fitting policy," he quipped. "It's out-of-fashion, you might say."

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It is indeed 'out of fashion' in the private sector, according to a talent recruiting firm in Quebec.

"Employees within a professional business environment are adults and do not need to be babysat," Pronexia wrote on its blog.

"When you hire someone, it is because you were impressed with his or her qualifications, background and professionalism. If you entrust them with getting the job done, why is it that you question their judgment skills when it comes to their trousers and shirts? I think it is part of old school mentality and old school way of management."

What do you think? Should there be a dress code for staffers at Queen’s Park?

Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

(Photo courtesy of the Canadian Press)

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