The Fight for Braiding Freedom

Tuesday, June 17, 2014
Is your stylist an outlaw? Probably not, but if she braids hair for a living without first obtaining acostly and time consuming cosmetology license, she may be running afoul of a troubling policy trend requiring licenses for professions that are perfectly safe.

No one should have to go to work with the fear that they could be fined or arrested. Unfortunately, for thousands of natural hair braiders, that fear is very real. That's because twenty-four states regulate hair braiders as cosmetologists, despite the fact that they do not use dyes, caustic chemicals or dangerous tools. In fact, the only tools they *do* use are their hands, which these laws effectively regulated as dangerous weapons.

 Today, that fear ends. The Institute for Justice, a nonprofit law firm that has represented hair braiders for more than two decades, is launching a national legal and online initiative to defend natural hair braiders' right to work free from over-zelious licensing laws. Those laws require that braiders take upwards of 1,500 or more hours of course work and take two exams—neither of which test their braiding ability—before they can accept their first paying client.

You can read more about the initiative at" - J. Justin Wilson, Director of Communications, Institute for Justice. To support this cause, hashtag #braidingfreedom on your social media pages. Check out the video below for more information.


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