A Long Overdue Ban on Hair Discrimination
Hair discrimination. It's something that never even crossed my mind until I witnessed it first hand. I was working in a service industry position and for context you should know that I have curly hair that can sometimes be unruly, messy, even just downright frizzy. But, I never worried about wearing it however I wanted to during my shifts. One day, while I was working alongside a fellow bartender who happened to be black, a manager called her over and instructed her to "do something about her hair" which confused me. Standing side by side her hair looked FAR better than mine did, kept out of her face with braids with the rest of her hair left natural. But, she was told it was "unprofessional" thus introducing me to hair discrimination. In conversation after this incident, my coworker told me this wasn't the first time and wouldn't be the last. Which did not sit well with me.
Imagine my relief to see that the first state I move to outside of Florida is pushing for a ban on hair discrimination. Named The Crown Act, the bill is part of a national effort to prohibit race based hair discrimination and now has backing from the Detroit City Council as reported by News 7 WXYZ. Earlier this week the bill received unanimous support according to Mary Sheffield, the woman who introduced it:
If passed, this bill would make it illegal to discriminate against someone based on hair style or texture in schools, the workplace and in other contexts. The act has already been passed in 7 other states. Hopefully, Michigan will be next. Legislation has received the green light in the Michigan House and now awaits approval from the Senate.