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Broader Impact of California Law that Bans Bias Against Hairstyles

6.28.19

California Gov. Gavin Newsom is expected to sign into law a bill that bans employers from discriminating based on hair textures and hairstyles. Known as The Crown Act, the legislation states “workplace dress codes and grooming policies that prohibit natural hair, including afros, braids, twists, and locks, have a disparate impact on Black individuals as these policies are more likely to deter Black applicants and burden or punish Black employees than any other group.” Sacramento attorney Natalie Fujikawa told Business Insurance that the legislation might eventually prove influential elsewhere. “California has a reputation for being extremely progressive with regard to employment laws, and historically other states have eventually followed suit, although it’s unclear how quickly that would happen,” she said.

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