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House of Representatives Pass CROWN Act To Ban Race-Based Hair Discrimination

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Black is beautiful and so is our hair! The U.S. House of Representatives just passed the CROWN Act, which would ban race-based hair discrimination in employment and those participating in federally assisted programs. Details inside…

We’re one step closer to ending race-based hair discrimination.

On Friday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the CROWN Act, which stands for “Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair."

 

The bill seeks to end discrimination and bias based on hair texture or hairstyle if that style or texture is commonly associated with a particular race or national origin, including protective styles such as locs, cornrows, twists, braids, Bantu knots, and Afros. LONG overdue!

The Democratic-led House voted 235-189 to pass the legislation. Woot!

”Natural Black hair is often deemed 'unprofessional' simply because it does not conform to White beauty standards," Democratic Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman of New Jersey, the bill's sponsor, said in a statement. "Discrimination against Black hair is discrimination against Black people."

Black people, and black women disproportionately, are heavily affected by hair-based racism in the workplace, interpersonal interactions, sports and more.  And thanks to the Crown Act, black women have a tool in their arsenal to fight back against one of the many factors attempting to prevent us from living our best lives. 

Peep some reactions below:

 

 

Versions of the CROWN Act are already law in over a dozen states, including New York, Virginia and California.

Now, the bill goes to the Senate for approval where Democratic Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey has sponsored the chamber's version of the bill.

In 2019, Dove and the CROWN Coalition, partnered with State Senator Holly J. Mitchell of California to introduce legislation to address the disparate impact of hair discrimination on Black people in workplaces and in schools. California Senate Bill 188 (SB 188) was introduced in January 2019 and signed into law on July 3, 2019, making California the first state to prohibit discrimination based on protective hairstyles and hair texture including locs, braids, bantu knots, and twists.

The inaugural CROWN Act spurred a nationwide movement to normalize Black hair and to date, thirteen (13) states have enacted The CROWN Act or laws inspired by the CROWN Act. A federal bill was introduced in both chambers of U.S. Congress in March 2021.

The Biden administration this week said it "strongly supports" the CROWN Act and "looks forward to working with the Congress to enact this legislation and ensure that it is effectively implemented."

Photo: Jacob Lund/Shutterstock


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