Stood down for not wearing high-cut work boots

May 2024

Maria* is employed as a cleaner and must wear high-cut work boots. Maria suffered an ankle injury in the workplace. Her doctor advised her employer that high-cut boots made her injury worse and that when she returned to work, she should wear safety shoes instead. Maria’s employer did not agree to this request and stood her down. Maria thought this was unfair, as her male colleagues who were wearing safety shoes rather than high-cut boots continued to work. Maria had always enjoyed her work and was extremely distressed.

Maria lodged a complaint of sex and disability discrimination with ADNSW. 

The matter was resolved in a conciliation conference. While Maria’s employer did not believe they had acted unlawfully, they apologised for not considering appropriate workplace adjustments. The employer acknowledged the distress this had caused her. Maria received $25,000 in compensation and a written apology.

*Name has been changed to protect the privacy of the individual

Last updated:

31 May 2024

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