Colombian men wear skirts in protest against university’s ‘sexist’ miniskirt ban

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University suggests students avoided low necklines, short skirts or tight-fitting clothes.

Colombian men have been wearing skirts in public to protest against a university’s miniskirt ban.

Pontifical Bolivarian University (UPB) in Medellín advised female students to stop wearing short skirts on campus as they were “distracting classmates and teachers”.

In a post titled “How should you dress to go to university?” the university advised a discreet dress code and suggested that students avoid “low necklines, short skirts or tight-fitting clothes”.

“There is nothing more uncomfortable than distracting your classmates or teachers,” the post read.

But the advice sparked a furious backlash among students, who slammed it as sexist.

In protest at the ban, both male and female students wore miniskirts to class on Thursday (9 February) and shared pictures of their outfits on social media with the caption #UPBenFalda (which translates as #UPBinskirts).

Student Helena Múnera wrote on Twitter: “Those who think that we are fighting for our right to wear short skirts or low necklines are very wrong. What we are asking for is an end to messages that encourage disrespect of women.”

City councillor Daniela Maturana also condemned the university’s stance. “If a woman is wearing a skirt or shorts or whatever she wants to wear, it is not a green light for cat calls or harassment,” she tweeted.

After the outcry, UPB apologised to students and said that the post was only meant as a general suggestion.

“The UPB respects the right to express personalities and has never imposed a dress code on students,” a university statement read. The university deleted the original post.

It is not the first time the university has been accused of sexism. In 2015, it held a summer school called “Girls Things” for girls aged five to 10 and taught them good manners.

@Juansebasv también se comprometió con #UPBenFalda pic.twitter.com/GgwiVWMMiL

Respeto, tolerancia y sana convivencia. Yo me pongo la falda como quiera. #UPBenFalda pic.twitter.com/NxZrEADdMf

Clase diaria de periodismo, de titulación de @elespectador y @fidelcanoco.👏👏 Hola #UPBenFalda 😎 pic.twitter.com/A8rdIIJz5D

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