Former President of the National Consumers Association, Kingsley St Hill, has asserted that a new dress code announced Monday for visitors to the Greaham Louisy Administrative Building, is unconstitutional.
St Hill told the Times that”law abiding” citizens and journalists should challenge it.
He explained that he could understand the need for security at the building, requiring the presentation of identification cards upon entry.
St Hill said that in the event of a fire or other emergency, there would be need to account for everyone who enters the building.
However the former Consumer Association President declared that indicating what clothing should be worn is an infringement on the rights of people.
“I could see some tourist coming in there from the boat and they want to transact some business – how can you tell them that they are not properly clad?” St Hill remarked.
He observed that the new dress code reminded him of a cabinet conclusion relating to smoking in public places.
“I don’t know how anyone can insist that I cannot go to the Land Registry with my catapult and my short pants and you will tell me as a Saint Lucian I cannot go there and inquire about my land – my family land? That’s a no go. You may need identification to know who I am – that I understand, but you cannot tell me I can’t come in there,” St Hill asserted.
He said the Land Registry is a public place – an open space.
According to the former NCA official, the dress requirement is unconstitutional.
“We see people half naked on the road for carnival – that is a public place; we see people on the beach – that is a public place; they’re in their bikinis and their short pants and nobody gets offended,” St Hill told the Times.
He stated that if the idea is to screen individuals in an effort to prevent crime, all that is needed is for a visitor to identify him or herself as the person they say they are.
“If they want to enhance security they could even put video cameras,” St Hill said.
St Hill told the Times it might only be a matter of time before the banks forbid customers to wear “catapults” and halter tops.
“You will tell the tourists that are coming here that want to change their money in the bank that they cannot come in there – they must have a jacket and tie to visit the bank?”
Declaring that such a requirement would be wrong, St Hill expressed the view that law abiding citizens need to fight the new government requirement as to appropriate dress for visiting the Greaham Louisy Administrative Building.
He called on “those advocacy journalists” and journalists who want to see things right to take on the issue.
The Department of the Public Service yesterday announced that with immediate effect, a dress code has been activated for visitors to the Greaham Louisy Administrative Building.
Bandanas, du-rags, halter tops, spaghetti straps, tank tops, cropped or open back tops that expose one’s bare back or midriff, outrageously short shorts, skirts or dresses, t-shirts with offensive words, and visible underwear are not allowed, the Department of the Public Service statement said.
Additionally, it advised members of the public that national identification cards (IDs) must be presented to gain entry into the Greaham Louisy Administrative Building, as there has been a spate of incidents where members of the public fake their identity in order to access public officers or officials within the building.