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Woman sues employer for forcing her to wear a bra to work

An Alberta woman has filed a human rights complaint against her employer after she was told she had to wear a bra to work.

Christina Schell was fired after refusing to comply with an updated dress code, which meant she had to wear a bra or an undershirt while she worked outdoors serving tables.

She told CBC when she confronted the general manager of the Osoyoos Golf Club, Doug Robb, she was told the rule was to protect her from members.


Schell claims he told her: ‘I know what happens in golf clubs when alcohol’s involved’.

The 25-year-old said she stopped wearing bras about two years ago, because she found them ‘horrible’.

Schell said she chose to use the human rights act to complain as she noticed men did not have the same amount of restrictions surrounding how they dressed.

“It’s gender-based and that’s why it’s a human rights issue,’I have nipples and so do the men.”

 McDonald’s cook Kate Gosek said she also struggled at work because of her choice not to wear a bra.

Gosek, 19, told CBC she had been confronted by multiple managers at the store who were displeased with her choice. She said one female manager had gone as far as to poke her shoulder looking for a strap.

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‘She just told me that I should put on a bra because, McDonald’s – we are a polite restaurant and no one needs to see that.’

Gosek, who doesn’t wear bras for comfort reasons, received an apology from two of her managers this week, with McDonald’s Canada confirming there is no requirement for female employees.

Under discrimination law, it is illegal for employers: ‘to discriminate against any individual because of his race, color, religion, sex, or national origin’.

While Gosek can now breathe easy she knows her employer has a positive view towards going bra-less, Schell is still waiting to hear back about the success, or lack thereof, of her human rights complaint.

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