- Sheetz is officially rescinding its “smile policy” — which disqualified people with poor dental hygiene from working at its stores — “effective immediately,” Stephanie Doliveira, executive vice president of people and culture at Sheetz, said in an emailed statement.
- Doliveira noted that “through employee feedback,” Sheetz learned and agreed that the policy didn’t align with its values of fostering a respectful and inclusive environment.
- Sheetz’s announcement comes less than a week after Business Insider published a story that featured former workers criticizing the policy, prompting the company to undertake a formal review of the rule.
More former Sheetz employees have spoken out against the retailer’s smile policy since the initial backlash.
One even noted that when she asked for time off to have dental work done on teeth she lost years earlier as a result of domestic abuse, her manager requested a timeline of when the procedures would occur and how much they would cost. This resulted in the employee quitting.
Sheetz’s smile policy formerly stated that “applicants with obvious missing, broken or badly discolored teeth (unrelated to a disability) are not qualified for employment” at the company. It also noted that employees who didn’t meet Sheetz’s dental standards should have about 90 days for “resolving issues such as this.”
Moreover, the policy stated that if employees had a dental issue that would “limit their ability to display a pleasant, full, and complete smile,” Sheetz couldn’t “permit this situation to go on indefinitely,” and would work with employee relations and the store’s district manager on a solution.
Moving forward, Sheetz is committed to ensuring its policies “are equitable and celebrate the diverse experiences, individual identities and unique perspectives” of its employees, Doliveira said.
"Our culture at Sheetz has always been centered on respect and putting our employees, customers and communities first,” she said. “As a family owned and operated company, nothing is more important than creating an environment that is inclusive and supportive of all of our employees.”
Altoona, Pennsylvania-based Sheetz, which was founded in 1952, operates more than 670 c-stores in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio and Maryland.