Japanese Women Are Petitioning Against Mandatory High Heels in the Workplace

by Aria Darcella
#KuToo

One woman in Japan is leading a crusade for sartorial equality — or to at least provide women with less painful footwear options. According to The Guardian, Yumi Ishikawa has launched a petition in Japan to end workplace dress codes that require women to wear high heels. She’s already got around 19,000 signatures in support.

But Ishikawa isn’t stopping at just a petition — she’s launched a full campaign. Using the hashtag #KuToo — a play on the Japanese words for shoes (“kutsu”) and pain (“kutsuu”), while also referencing #MeToo — it aims to bring attention to how women even feel pressured to wear heels to job interviews. Ishikawa herself says she had to wear heels when she worked at a funeral parlor.

“I hope this campaign will change the social norm so that it won’t be considered to be bad manners when women wear flat shoes like men,” she told the publication. While we love a cute pair of heels, no woman should be forced to wear them just to feel professional.

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