AP International

Top Spanish court nixes height rule for women joining police

MADRID (AP) — Spain’s Supreme Court has disallowed a rule on a minimum height for women wanting to join the police force, saying it is discriminatory.

Candidates for the National Police Corps must meet height requirements, among other qualifications. Women must be at least 1.60 meters (5 feet, 3 inches) tall, and men at least 1.65 meters (5 feet, 4 inches).

But a woman plaintiff who missed the cut because she measured 1.54 meters (just over 5 feet) complained that the requirements were more favorable for men because only 3% of the male population don’t meet the requirement. For women, 25% of the population don’t stand that tall.

The Supreme Court said in a statement published Monday that simply setting different height differences for men and women was not enough. The rules must take into account the average height for each sex in the Spanish population, the judges ruled.

The average height of Spanish men is 1.74 meters (5 feet, 8 inches) and for women is 1.63 meters (5 feet, 4 inches), for those between 20 and 49 years of age, according to court documents.


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