“Dress codes are there for a reason, whatever that reason is. If you wish to challenge the reasoning behind the dress code, which is perfectly within your civil right, you do it the right way.”
This is the advice that Facebook user Tai Zee Kin imparted to Malaysian netizens, whom in his view of the recent cases involving dress codes in government institutions, preferred to seek public attention and sympathy rather than dealing professionally with the issue.
In his posting yesterday, Tai urged netizens to stop blaming government institutions for establishing dress code rules.
“What you should not do is to blame the institution/organisation. JPJ, Jabatan Tanah etc. are part of government offices and the dress code for visitors are based on the Chief Secretaries’ discretion and directive,” he said.
In the same Facebook post, Tai also shared his experiences being denied entry to the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO) concert and a fancy dining restaurant in London for wearing casual attire instead of formal attire.
“Not knowing much about the dress code requirement, I wore a decent looking shirt and jeans. The usher didn’t allow me in to the hall. She said I didn’t follow their dress code and she cannot allow me in.
“The usher then led me to a room, with some jackets, and also over-sized slack-looking baggy pants which I was told to wear on top of my jeans. I ended up like a baggy man inside the hall. I was grateful,” wrote Tai.
Elaborating on his first experience, Tai explained that despite being denied entry to the MPO hall, he adhered to the rules and regulations instead of taking pictures of himself in his over-sized clothes as an insult to the place.
On his second experience of being denied into a fancy dining restaurant in London, Tai mentioned that he did not take it personally as he understood that it was based on the dress code of the restaurant.
“I had to rush back to Finchley Road and change into a suit before I went back to the restaurant again. I was late for an hour because of that.” .
As such Tai advised netizens on several ways to convey their dissatisfaction over certain government offices which imposed dress codes on the public.
“You can write to your assemblyman or Members of Parliament, ask them to move a motion to override the Chief Secretary of Government’s directive on dress code.
“You can write to the Chief Secretary of Government to ask him to amend the dress code.
“You can protest or call for a peaceful assembly and demand that the Chief Secretary amend the dress code,” wrote Tai.
The posting on his Facebook page today gained a lot of positive and supportive comments from other Facebook users and had since received 8,800 likes and 2,900 shares.
One Facebook user by the name Faris Jamalludin commented by saying that people should wear according to the occasion, because it portrayed one’s decency and morality.
“Untuk urusan rasmi di pejabat2 samada kerajaan atau swasta ke..pakailah pakaian yg sesuai. Collar atau polo tshirt bersama jeans atau slack pants atau kargo pants atau baju kurung atau skirt. Janji nampak kemas..decent dan sopan,” (For official business regardless whether government or private institutions, dress appropriately. Collared shirt or polo shirt with slacks, baju kurung or knee-length skirt. As long as we look neat, decent and modest.) commented Faris.
“I cannot agree more on your contentions that Malaysians must abide to all dress codes in public places,” commented Mohd Ramli Othman, another Facebook user.
Previously, there were several cases where members of the public were denied entry to public institutions for wearing improper clothes and decided to share it to the public via Facebook when they were ordered to cover up.
Of late, a girl was also denied entry to Hospital Sungai Buloh for wearing a short skirt and decided to cover herself with a towel so that she could enter the place.