KS senator apologizes for dress code guidelines

Posted at 7:39 AM, Jan 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-26 20:40:47-05

UPDATE, 1/26: 

Sen. Mitch Holmes released the following statement Tuesday: 

"My failure to clearly specify that all conferees, regardless of gender, should strive to present themselves professionally is unacceptable. I apologize and meant no offense. I have decided to retract the conferee guidelines."



A Senate committee chairman has imposed a dress code for Kansas residents testifying on an elections or ethics bill that prohibits women from wearing certain clothing while establishing no wardrobe restrictions exclusively for men.

“For ladies, low cut necklines and mini-skirts are inappropriate,” it says in Sen. Mitch Holmes' 11-point code of conduct. Read all of the guidelines here.

So is this really a problem? Nikole Hudson, manager of Amelia’s Boutique, says it can be for some.

"We get a lot of, you know, fresh out of college, first time in the career world, you know, what do I wear, how do I dress because they are used to a little bit more trendy, fun outfits," said Hudson.

Hudson says women should find dresses and skirts hitting at the knee and low-cut tops should be avoided altogether.

But who would enforce these rules?

"This isn't the fashion police, he's not the fashion police," said Fourth District Representative for Kansas David Haley.

Haley serves on the Senate Ethics and Elections Committee with Holmes.

"It's completely off the wall for anyone to suggest how a citizen coming to Kansas who wants to bring testimony on an issue that brings them before a committee should dress," said Haley.



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