PBCBA BAR BULLETINS JUNE 2020 BULLETIN - Page 17

e Hair: An Analysis of Racial, Gender Discrimination rigin. s have been tied to tity. Prior to slavery, uld use hairstyles, , and twists, to signify hich they belonged; sential part of their eing used to identify styles were also used marital status, age, ity, wealth and rank ity. vi After Africans of the preliminary s would take to erase o shave their heads. been conducted to hair has on African ocial, ethnic, gender, in addition to its use . The importance of an also be evidenced $15 billion black hair .S. vii hortage of examples s have been targeted n with specific racial overnor of Louisiana eole women of color al hair and required arf. viii More recently, ch had a dress code, ids, twists, cornrows, se, according to the ner did not want “hipblishment. ix Another national news when as was told he would ate in his graduation ut off his dreadlocks. x a new dress code that three months prior to ony. Although there nce tying hairstyles ethnic identity, and a ed racial and gender basis of hairstyles, to consistently utilize 1964 as a remedy. yment Opportunity ed a lawsuit on behalf er she was denied a trophe Management ecause she had as dismissed by U.S. R. Butler, Jr., because e VII only prohibits discrimination based on immutable characteristics. The court’s ruling was upheld on appeal and the Supreme Court denied Jones’ motion to be added to the lawsuit and be heard by the court. xi However, legislatures and other legal authorities have recognized this clear error of the courts and are slowly acting as a check to fix the mistake and address this form of discrimination directly. New York City was the first entity to act when its Commission on Human Rights issued guidelines banning hair discrimination in February of 2019. xii California became the first state to ban hair discrimination with the passage of the Crown Act; New York, New Jersey, and Virginia followed. xiii This movement has also recently hit close to home with the Palm Beach County School District’s unanimous vote to institute a hair discrimination ban in February of this year. Although this is a step in the right direction, we should all seek to serve as advocates at the legislative, judicial, and commercial level for the expansion of hair discrimination bans throughout Florida, in line with the spirit and intent of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Edgardo Hernandez is the Managing Attorney at Trinity Law, P.A., where he practices criminal, family and personal injury law. Edgardo may be reached at [email protected] i https://www.nationalgeographic.org/interactive/ slavery-united-states/ ii https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/history/50th/thelaw/ civil_rights_act.cfm iii https://www.britannica.com/event/Civil-Rights-Act- United-States-1964 iv https://www.britannica.com/topic/Civil-Rights-Act- United-States-1875 v https://blackthen.com/you-cant-take-our-crowns-theimpact-of-slavery-on-black-womens-hair/ vi https://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/t/text/text-idx?cc=mfsf ront;c=mfs;c=mfsfront;idno=ark5583.0022.105;rgn=main; view=text;xc=1;g=mfsg vii https://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/t/text/text-idx?cc=mfs front;c=mfs;c=mfsfront;idno=ark5583.0022.105;rgn=main ;view=text;xc=1;g=mfsg viii https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/j5abvx/ black-womens-hair-illegal-tignon-laws-new-orleanslouisiana ix https://web.archive.org/web/20120312222647/http:// www.totalinjury.com/news/articles/discrimination/ dreadlocks.aspx x https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/blacktexas-teen-told-cut-his-dreadlocks-order-walkgraduation-n1120731 xi https://rewire.news/ablc/2018/05/16/u-s-supremecourt-ignoring-black-hair-discrimination/ xii https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/430519- nyc-to-ban-harassment-discrimination-based-onhairstyle xiii https://www.cnn.com/2020/03/05/us/virginia-banhair-discrimination-bill-trnd/index.html ETIN 9