Ugg boots – to wear or not to wear?

Are you toes toasty warm in a pair of woolly ugg boots this morning?

Lucky you don’t work for the public service in Canberra. This week the Immigration Department laid down the law to its employees on the whys and wherefores of wearing ugg boots. The Department has a new dress code and comfort dressing is definitely out.

A Senate Estimates hearing was told Immigration Department staff are not permitted to wear ugg boots or onesies to work.

The Department’s Jan Dorrington told the Senate Committee “there are certain things that wouldn’t constitute professional business dress and that would be things like jeans, thongs, ugg boots and so on”.

“I couldn’t imagine that many people would be rocking up to work in ugg boots,” asked Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young.

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“Ah, you’d be surprised, Senator,” Ms Dorrington replied.

So far no-one has been disciplined under the new dress code – the Immigration Department Secretary Mike Pezzullo said he did not think the rules were “draconian” but rather about “basic professionalism”.

Can you believe this issue occupied the time of a Senate Estimates hearing? Never mind the waste of taxpayer’s money (but that’s an issue for another day)!

What’s just as difficult to comprehend, is that professional public servants would even contemplate wearing ugg boots to the workplace. Surely there is a place for ugg boots and there are places where ugg boots should never see the light of day.

The question is where do we draw the line on wearing these woolly bastions of Australian fashion?

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A member of the Starts at 60 staff has admitted she donned her ‘uggies’ and wore them to a dinner party at a friend’s place recently, only because she saw other friends wearing ugg boots in this type of setting too.

Posh Spice would surely be aghast. Victoria Beckham has told French fashion magazine Madam Figaro ugg boots and tracksuits are a no go. “You’ll never see me on the street in a tracksuit. I just love fashion too much to wear a tracksuit! The same goes for Ugg boots. I only wear them only at home”.


Where do you sit in the great ugg boot debate? Is it OK to wear them whenever and wherever, as long as your feet are warm? Or should ugg boots be confined to the wardrobe realm of slippers to be worn only in the privacy of home?