While female workers want to be treated the same as everyone else when it comes to pay and respect, the reality is that there are some aspects of the job that have to be different. One thing that all female workers need to make sure of is that their personal protective equipment is an appropriate size.
Personal protective equipment, better known as PPE, protects your body against injuries or infections that you'd be otherwise exposed to while on the job. You might have helmets, gloves, jumpsuits or other attire that keeps you safe.
Why is the sizing of the personal protective equipment so important?
Imagine a 200-pound man next to a 100-pound woman. The woman is slight, has small hands and an hourglass figure. The man has more of an apple-shaped body, is over six-foot tall and has large hands.
The gloves that would fit this man will not fit the woman. The glasses fit to the man's face would fall off the woman's face if she bent over her work. No jumpsuits could be shared between them.
As you can probably tell, the PPE that the man needs will be different from what the woman needs. If the woman does not have small enough equipment, it may fall off or expose her skin to damage. (Additionally, this can apply to people of either gender when they are larger or smaller than average).
Which types of PPE are already made in varied sizes?
Most PPE is available in different sizes, and some have specialty cuts for female workers to account for their body shapes. Most workers will be able to order things such as hard hats and gloves in the correct size, so they fit properly.
What can you do if your employer doesn't offer the right sizing for your personal protective equipment?
Employers who provide your equipment should always give you the option to have the correct size of equipment ordered. If they try to get you to use equipment that doesn't fit well or refuse to purchase equipment in the correct size, then you my be able to file a case against them, especially if you end up getting hurt on the job.
Your health and safety is reliant on your equipment fitting well and being the right size. Don't ignore the risks. Make sure you're wearing the right attire when you're working, no matter what the cost.