TLC has a show called Big Sexy. It chronicles the lives of 5 plus size women in their pursuit of their fashion dreams, from model to clothing designer in the big, mean streets of New York City. In one particular episode, the women are waiting to get into a club. In the clip, you can see the bouncer letting in smaller girls ahead of the plus size women. The bouncer keeps allowing the tiny women to cut in front of the plus size women, as they patiently stand by. Finally, they ask the bounder if they can go in, and the bouncer replies, "It will cost you $30, each." The women, I am proud to say, do not apologetically pay that horrid man the "hush money," so that they can slink into the club. Instead, heads held high, they walk away from the club, a little worse for wear, but certainly not lacking in integrity, strength, or style. I am very proud of these women.
Taking this example from club to corporation, how many times are plus size women overlooked for promotions in the workforce because of their size, rather than their qualifications? Plus size women are paid less than their smaller counterparts, solely because of their size. From an article on Shine, "Obese women earn about 6 percent less than thinner women for doing exactly the same work", according to Rebecca Puhl, PhD, director of research at the Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity at Yale University. "We're observing this around a BMI of 27 in women," she says, referring to a "body mass index" that would, for example, describe a 5 foot-5 inch person weighing 162 pounds. I do not feel that a BMI of 27 accurately reflects the average size Amercian woman today, which is a size 14. How dare employers equate dress size to the amount of pay, rather than qualifications.
These are only the instances that have been documented. How many times has a boss not articulate that they will not hire you, but you could feel it, because you were fat? How many times are you overlooked for a promotion because of how you look? I am guessing more times than we know, and that is just not right.