Passengers on Sydney trains are in for a real treat: gone are the days of untucked shirts and stubbled chins – rail staff are being whipped into line following the roll out of the new “first impression’s count” initiative.
In a move supported by the Minster for Transport, who recently commented that she can’t stand seeing shirts untucked, train staff have been categorically informed that they will be sent home if they fail to comply with the revised grooming standards.
RailCorp this morning confirmed to the Sydney Morning Herald that three staff members had been prevented from working yesterday. “The vast majority of RailCorp staff signed on yesterday well-presented and wearing their uniforms in a neat and tidy manner,” the spokeswoman said. “At this stage three employees out of approximately 3,250 front-line staff were not permitted to sign on because they failed to meet presentation standards,” she added.
Following the announcement of the initiative last month, NSW transport minster Gladys Berejiklian told 2GB that the reason for the new policy was to promote cultural change. “When you turn up to work in mufti day you also have a bit more of a different attitude, don't you? We are saying to everyone in the organisation we all have to change,” Berejiklian commented, before adding that she “can't stand seeing shirts untucked”.
RailCorp's grooming standards now require employees to check with their manager if they intend to grow facial hair. They policy also specifies that the “grunge look” is not acceptable, sunglasses are “not to be left resting on top of head”, “long sleeves must not be rolled up”, and hats and caps ”must not be worn at an extreme angle”.
Managers have been starting shifts early to enforce the standards, and extra drivers have had to replace those not allowed to work. The policy has been condemned by the Rail, Tram and Bus Union.
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