All employees connected with the local government unit of Maasin City have a separate color uniform to wear daily in reporting for work to their respective offices, just like any other public or private agency.
But for several years now in a row every February, they take a break in donning office uniforms for several days, a unique practice in observance, or in compliance, of a “Uniform Holiday” order.
Yes, that’s an order, but everyone or so it would seem followed it with delight, with gusto, in the spirit of fun, and enjoying every minute of it.
“I wore so many colors, so I can fit any emotion associated with each color,” says one department assistant head, whose station was quite far from city hall yet she feels proud in showing to those in the know her mood/status of the day as colorful, I mean, her dress and the assigned meanings of each color.
“My coat is black, which means ‘bitter,’ but at least my undershirt is white, which means ‘empty or pure.’ I chose pure,” said an employee, grinning upon knowing the consequence of his attire in the probing eyes of his officemates.
On February 4, 2022, City Mayor Nacional Mercado signed Executive Order 050 declaring February 7-15 -- a period of seven working days -- as Uniform Holiday.
“In celebration of the upcoming love day or the Valentine’s Day, all personnel of the city are required to join the ‘Uniform Holiday’ which means that all city officials and employees will have to choose the color of their outfit that matches their respective moods or status from February 7-15, 2022,” Mercado said in his issuance of EO 050.
Aside from the mentioned colors black and white for bitter and empty/pure, respectively, here is the color coding of an employee’s OOTD to match her/his mood/status:
Red In a relationship or “In Love”
Pink Looking for someone
And those wearing the usual office uniforms during the days set aside as uniform holiday, well, they are branded and cast aside as “killjoy and non-participative,” a very harsh commentary which may affect an employee’s performance rating or, worse, a subconscious display of a person’s secret attitude.
The good thing is, no one was wearing office uniform, as far as this writer’s eyes can see.
The only question now is who will be wearing the color pink.
Or the grey color. (LDL/MMP/PIA8-Southern Leyte)