It appears that courier giants, UPS arent feeling at all festive this Christmas holiday, as one gentleman has been forbidden from delivering parcels at Christmas based on the grounds of him being a bearded fellow, yes you read that correctly, banned for choosing to sport a beard! HAS THE WORLD GONE MAD??!
Mr Allan Stokell had wanted to venture about the city as what is known as a 'Walker' by the courier service, which in short is an extra set of helping hands that shadows a UPS driver, helping deliver their packages to customers right in time for Christmas. You'd have imagined a beard fits into the fun festivities perfectly. After all, Jolly 'Old Saint Nick' aka 'Santa Claus' sports a snowy white bushy beard himself! But rather shockingly UPS disagrees and are choosing to stick by their overly strict guidelines which amazingly bans beards from the faces of their staff who come into contact with general members of the public.
Speaking with the local press Mr Stokell had his say - ''I don't believe large multi-national corporations should be able to get away with this. I've had a beard since I was 18 and I identify as being a bearded person''. Mr Stokell went onto say - ''It's something I live by, I'm very proud of my beard and I'm not really interested in shaving it off.'' Here here we say, Sir!
Mr Stokell is a retired fellow living in Toronto who applied for a seasonal position with the courier giants, UPS as a 'walker'. UPS later responded to his application asking amongst other questions, whether he accepts the company's ''Strict Appearance Guidelines'' which one rule demands all employees to be clean shaven, whilst hiding any visible tattoos or piercings.
Mr Stokell was fast to respond that he proudly sports a well trimmed beard. During an email exchange between himself and the company Mr Stokell was told that ''Unless one is keeping their facial hair for religious or medical reasons, all employees need to be clean shaven at UPS as part of the UPS's appearance policy.'' And if an employee were to grow a beard based on religious or medical grounds, they must supply correct documentation when doing so.
Wait here a minute, HAS THE WORLD GONE MAD??! When has this ever been morally correct that a work force can rightfully allow such rules to be written in a ''Rule Book''? This seems way off topic on how this has any effect on a worker's ability to do the job at hand in a punctual manner. This isn't the first time UPS has been under the spotlight for such regulations when it comes to facial hair. Back in 2015 the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commision (Phew, that was a mouthful!) filed a lawsuit against UPS alleging the company strongly discriminated against current and prospective staff whose religious beliefs required them to grow beard or long hair. Although this matter is still yet to be resolved.
Mr Stokell has not heard anything further from the company since their short email exchange that day, although he has made his final thoughts known and is no longer interested in working for the UPS company. And going off their stance of banning facial fluff from the workplace, I can't say I blame him for standing firm on his beliefs.
A penny for my thoughts? It has to be said that rules within the workplace can sometimes feel a little whacky and off topic, but this takes the royal biscuit in my view. Having a dislike of beards is one thing, but to outright banish them forever more is just plain ludicrous! I feel such rules are a gross breach of our human rights and personal preferences. Not to mention a tad outdated. Come on UPS! Get with the times already! If a guy wants to sport some form of facial forestry allow him to do so freely, without the concern or you clapping him around the head with your old dusty outdated rule book in hand!
I'd love to hear your thoughts my friends. Do you agree that beards do not belong in the workplace? Or are you dead against the idea that such rules are even in existence? As always let us have your comments in the box you'll find provided below.