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Asserting comfort, identity vis-a-vis discrimination March 12, 2009

Posted by pilibustero in Personal.

I had this uncomfortable ordeal with a senior staff in the office few weeks ago. The story being, she called my attention for dressing inappropriately during office hours. She explained that we are an ISO certidied institution and that such manner may have bearing on our stature. Moreover, she suggested to me to at least wear a polo shirt and probably get away with my signature t-shirt, maong, ‘chucks’, backpack, and rugged, wavy hair.

I tried  to listen to her intently. Unfortunately, she came to me as an irate, it came to me as an insult. And out of nowhere, I shared with her my tirrades.

– First and foremost, I find wearing t-shirts comfortable. No explanations needed. But take note, that during meetings or special events, I see to it to be on an appropriate attire. I narrated to her our hearings in Congress and Senate and attendance in various conferences. Not to mention inhouse workshops.

– Second, nowhere in our contract of services did mention of wearing standard forms of attire, or signify that polo shirt is the standard office attire in lieu of uniforms.

– At any rate, uniforms or attires are never tantamount to quality service to clients and accomplishing our tasks by the day. While our office wants to portray some sort of a corporate set up, we are never situated in Makati or any business districts, we are duly situated at the foot of a rainforest with an erratic microclimate, thus, I insist comfort.

– Professionalism=Attire, if blatanly reflected in my contract, maybe yes; lest, I beg to deviate from this unwritten rule. After all, we are not a private company, and I’m not a tenured employee. we don’t even have an employer-employee relationship. I was hired here purely for my services and not for who I am and what I do outside the office, and if my attire did comprpmise my services, then I should subscribe to such policy in accordance to my terms of reference, otherwise, I remain to like this.

–  To be fair to to all, why not call the attention of other employees who also usually wear t-shirts. To think, some are way up the managerial level.   I can pin-point them anytime.

I was really offended and discriminated by way of such simple remarks. Hence, this justification. And I will remain firm and continue to assert whenever needed, for the sake of comfort, legality, fairness, and  self preservation=:)



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