In the US, a young female reporter was denied entry into the Speaker’s lobby because she was wearing a sleeveless dress. So she made makeshift sleeves, only to be denied again.  

The Speaker’s lobby is a room where reporters go to interview lawmakers. However, the archaic dress code rules are causing women reporters to speak out.

The official rule says that anyone visiting the area should wear appropriate attire. However, these rules have been loosely interpreted over the years.

The House Speaker, Paul Ryan, even issued a reminder about the importance of a dress code. “Members should periodically re-dedicate themselves to the core principles of proper parliamentary practice that are so essential to maintaining order and deliberacy here in the House,” he said.

Another journalist, Haley Bryd, a reporter for the Independent Journal Review, was also not allowed in the Speaker’s lobby because she was wearing a sleeveless dress. 

“When I was kicked out that day, I was just trying to pass through the area to reach another hallway, but I was told I was violating the rules. They offered to find a sweater for me to put on, so it wasn’t some tyrannical end of free press, but I opted to just go around instead. But recently, they’ve been cracking down on the code, like with open-toed shoes,” she said.

Why so much uproar over sleeves or no sleeves? One would hope politics had moved past dictating what women can and cannot wear.

Also Read: Gender Pay Gap in White House Greater Than US National Average