Tattoos may seem ubiquitous these days, but it turns out some companies still consider visible ink a deal breaker for employees.
Claire Shepherd of Swansea, Wales scored her dream gig as the retail merchandiser for shopping logistics company Dee Set.
After a stellar phone interview, Dee Set hired Shepherd, sight unseen, and emailed the 27-year-old introductory information, including details about the company dress code.
On Wednesday, in a Facebook post that featured a photo of her large, detailed hand tattoo, Shepherd shared,
Thinking this was an old standard e-mail the company sent out, and that their views had changed, I emailed them explaining that I had hand tattoos and hope this wouldn't affect my new job... I was shocked when they replied and said they would no longer be employing me... I was perfect for the job due to my skills, previous experience and flexibility. They clearly thought I had something to offer and would be the right person for the job... I'm shocked that people still discriminate against visible tattoos.
Shepherd's post was since shared more than 3,000 times, and plenty of users commented words of support.
In response, Dee Set once again offered Shepherd the position, this time accepting her body art.
She declined the job and told Daily Mail,
They saw my tattoo and saw it was not offensive, but I feel if I hadn't gone viral they wouldn't have offered me the job back. I'm glad they saw their mistake and corrected it, though, that's a step forward.
In a statement, Dee Set Chief Operating Officer Greg Phillips claimed the original rescinding of Shepherd's employment offer was an oversight.
He reportedly said,
Dee Set is a progressive, equal opportunity employer and recognizes this error in process during our peak recruitment period.
Shepherd now works for retail company B&M and hopes her unfortunate experience will bring attention to outdated policies that discriminate against potential hires based on appearances.
In my opinion, tattoos do not affect your performance or ability to do a job and do not pose a health and safety risk or cause any harm. It is literally just some color or a picture on your skin. I was previously an assistant manager and it never posed an issue. As long as the person is capable of doing their job then I do not see how it is justifiable.
Despite Shepherd's eventual victory, a future in which hand, neck and especially facial tattoos are entirely accepted in the professional world seems far in the distance.