Japan Airlines to Abolish Sexist Dress Code Amid #KuToo Pressure

Thanks to the pressure from the #KuToo campaign, Japan Airlines announced its flight attendants will join longer be required to wear high heels and skirts as part of their uniform.

The #KuToo campaign criticized the sexist dress codes for women in the workplace. The airline is the first major company in Japan to halt its enforcement of women wearing heels and skirts in an effort to create and “diverse work environment.”

Founder of the movement actress and freelance writer Yumi Ishikawa supports the relaxed dress code for flight attendants but noted, “It’s not only the airlines - there are also hotels, department stores, banks and a lot of other companies with this requirement. I hope they follow this example."

While Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he opposed dress codes for women, it will remain an issue as one survey found. About 60% of women said they were told to wear high heels or witnessed a woman being forced to wear high heels at work and 80% of women surveyed said high heels were uncomfortable.

The Realist Woman’s take:

I really do understand workplace dress codes, especially for certain industries. But in almost every industry in Japan, women are required to wear high heels, even if that job requires them to be on their feet all day. It’s wrong. 

What Japan Airlines did was amazing and it’s all thanks to this movement. I think this move will influence other companies to come around and follow suit.

Many people complain that protesting and hashtags don’t lead to real change but this story proves they can and do lead to change. Protesting and activism bring awareness and as long as the pressure on the issue remains, change is always possible. Bravo girls!

Company wants to create a diverse work environment