Modern Self Expression
I believe with how the times are changing work places could be more lenient with their dress code policies. Nowadays it's nothing strange about having your groceries bagged by someone with multiple nose piercings. I highly doubt customers would complain about being surrounded by rainbow haired associates. The fact of the matter is that professionalism has nothing to do with your personal self expression anymore. I firmly believe as long as you are well groomed, cleanly cut and professionally dressed the rest shouldn't be an issue. I think colored hair, moderate piercings and tattoos (which are already allowed) should always be accepted in a modern day workplace. Especially with so many of the younger generation working in these fields, it would be a comfort to know that their individuality isn't being stifled because of a dress code made for the 1950's.
Why is this important?
Times are changing and I believe Publix is far behind in certain terms. Revising the dresscode won't change the satisfaction of your customers, nor should it affect the quality of your business and products, with that in mind I think you should be taking another look at your dress code. Like I said before, in these modern times this type of self expression is VERY important to some people. There's no point anymore in drawing out the past, and conforming people to this poorly out-dated dress code. When someone refuses to change their hair/etc. for Publix you're thinking they must not want to work there badly, but the message you're truly sending is that unless you give up your individuality you cannot work for our company. If someone decides they want to do something different for themselves they should be able to with out fear of losing their jobs.