Essilor and Vision Impact Institute Support #Glasses4Women

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CHARENTON-LE-PONT, France—Essilor and the Vision Impact Institute (VII) have announced their support of a social media campaign promoting the right of women throughout the world to wear eyeglasses. The campaign is based around a series of hashtags including #glasses4women that have been trending on Twitter since early November. The hashtags sprang up in reaction to recent reports aired by Japan’s Nippon TV and Business Insider Japan that revealed that women in Japan working in a number of industries have been instructed by the companies in which they work to refrain from wearing eyeglasses on the job. The same rules do not apply to their male counterparts. Reasons given for the policy range from appearance to safety.

The issue is not only happening in Japan but in several other countries across the globe, Essilor and VII noted on their respective websites. In South Korea, a female news anchor wore eyeglasses on air for the very first time in 2018, in the history of all live news programs on Korea’s three major broadcasting channels. This bold action challenged stigmas surrounding spectacle wear for women. A study in rural India shows that some people refused to wear spectacles, as they are deemed cosmetically unacceptable. This has led to a fear of rejection from the opposite sex as well as teasing from colleagues.

In a statement on its website, Essilor said, “In line with the Vision Impact Institute, Essilor applauds the thousands of social media users and traditional media outlets that have spoken out against this decision and are continuing to do so. Essilor is striving for a future where everyone sees the world clearly, feels included and diversity is actively championed, as affirmed by the Group’s recent inclusion in Financial Times’ global Diversity Leaders ranking. This is why Essilor and the Vision Impact Institute firmly support #glasses4women, a movement to highlight the critical role good vision plays in creating a more balanced world for women.”

Click here to watch a video about the #glasses4women campaign.