In case you forgot, the year is 2020. But that doesn’t stop discrimination and blatant racism from permeating every edge of America. (*Cough* the cops who killed Breonna Taylor *cough.*) This type of discrimination is still so pervasive that Colorado is now the latest state to ban hair discrimination. Yes, hair discrimination.
The CROWN Act (Create a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair) aims to end discrimination because of hair styles. “People of African descent are deprived of educational and employment opportunities because they are adorned with natural or protective hairstyles,” the bill explains.
Black women are “1.5 times more likely to be sent home from the workplace because of their hair,” CROWN’s website notes.
Colorado State Representative Leslie Herod sponsored the bill, drawing from her own experience with discrimination as a Black woman.
“No one should be penalized for the way their hair grows naturally out of their heads,” Herod told The Denver Post. “We should support and celebrate our diversity, and we should ensure that Colorado is in place to protect folks who are being discriminated against.”
Colorado follows similar legislation in New York, California, Washington, Virginia, Maryland, and New Jersey. Twenty-two states have considered similar measures so far this year, with 17 failing to pass the legislation.
“I hope that this bill empowers our young people to be who they are,” Herod said, “but also to know that they can push and demand equality.”