Two states have become the fourth and fifth states to ban discrimination against natural hair. Virginia and Colorado have officially implemented the CROWN Act, which stands for Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair.
According to reports, the House Bill 1514 was signed by Virginia Governor Ralph Northam that bans discrimination against “hair texture, hair type, and protective hairstyles such as braids, locks and twists.”
“It’s pretty simple—if we send children home from school because their hair looks a certain way, or otherwise ban certain hairstyles associated with a particular race—that is discrimination,” Governor Northam said according to ABC affiliate WHSV. “This is not only unacceptable and wrong, it is not what we stand for in Virginia. This bill will make our Commonwealth more equitable and welcoming for all.”
The bill unamiously passed through the Virginia Senate in February. Other states that banned hair discrimination against natural hair include New York, California and New Jersey.
“A person’s hair is a core part of their identity,” Virginia Delegate Delores McQuinn said about the new law. “Nobody deserves to be discriminated against simply due to the hair type they were born with, or the way in which they choose to wear it. The acceptance of one’s self is the key to accepting others.”
Another state that also banned hair discrimination this week is Colorado. Governor Jared Polis signed House Bill 1048 last night (March 5) according to the Denver Post.
“When someone chooses to celebrate their natural hair, we should join them in that celebration and not discriminate against them,” Colorado Representative Leslie Herod said about the passing of the new bill.
The CROWN Act was first a movement started by Dove and other organizations who raised awareness about hair discrimination and advocated for it to become illegal.