For as long as America has had a history, Black hair has been a point of tension in White spaces. These days, the problem persists to the point that companies all over the United States can still discriminate against Black people for wearing their hair naturally. Now, a new campaign from Color of Change, in partnership with the CROWN Coalition, calls for the federal government to create laws to end hair discrimination nationwide.
“Across America, Black people are policed, humiliated and even sent home because employers and peers want to control our expression with invisible codes designed to make us tone down who we are and where we come from. And we will not stand for it a moment longer. We won bills that end hair discrimination in two states, and now we are fighting to end it across the nation,” the petition reads.
In February, the New York City Commission on Human Rights released new guidelines equating hair-texture prejudice to racial discrimination and putting employers on the line to pay up to $25 million in penalties if they falter, Colorlines previously reported. And in July, California became the first state to outright ban racial discrimination based on hair, the Los Angeles Times reported. The campaign aims to make it illegal at the federal level, so Black people nationwide are protected from discrimination. Check out the petition here.