Massachusetts Turns into Newest State To Ban Discrimination Based mostly On Pure Hairstyles And Hair Texture – Discrimination, Incapacity & Sexual Harassment – United States

Massachusetts Turns into Newest State To Ban Discrimination Based mostly On Pure Hairstyles And Hair Texture – Discrimination, Incapacity & Sexual Harassment – United States

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On July 26, 2022, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed
into regulation “An Act Prohibiting Discrimination Based mostly on Pure
and Protecting Hairstyles
,” often known as the
Massachusetts CROWN Act. The regulation prohibits discrimination in opposition to a
particular person for carrying “[n]atural or protecting
coiffure[s],” together with, however not restricted to “braids,
locks, twists, Bantu knots and different formations” in
workplaces, college organizations, and locations of public
lodging.

The submitting and eventual passage of the Massachusetts CROWN Act
was prompted largely by a 2017 incident during which African
American twin sisters at a Massachusetts constitution college have been
disciplined after carrying braid extensions, a protecting model
banned by the varsity on the time. The college finally rescinded
the coverage following public criticism and complaints, together with
from Massachusetts Legal professional Common Maura Healey and the American
Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts.

The Massachusetts CROWN Act prohibits college organizations from
adopting or implementing insurance policies or codes that impair or prohibit
pure or protecting hairstyles. The regulation additionally prohibits
discrimination in opposition to pure and protecting hairstyles in locations
of employment and housing, in addition to locations of public
lodging equivalent to shops, eating places, and inns. Additional, the
laws duties the Massachusetts Fee In opposition to
Discrimination with adopting and promulgating guidelines, rules,
insurance policies, and suggestions to implement the regulation.

The passage of the regulation in Massachusetts (adopted by the
Massachusetts Home of Representatives and Senate unanimously)
follows a rising effort to enact CROWN laws (“Creating
a Respectful and Open World for Pure Hair”) throughout the
United States. To this point, seventeen different states and U.S. territories
have enacted comparable legal guidelines, together with Illinois, Louisiana, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Efforts are additionally ongoing
to go CROWN Act laws on the federal stage, because the federal model of the invoice, cosponsored by
Rep. Ayanna Presley, who represents Massachusetts’s seventh
congressional district, at present awaits a vote within the U.S.
Senate.

In essence, the Massachusetts CROWN Act creates a brand new foundation for
an employment discrimination declare within the Commonwealth. As such, a
violation of the brand new regulation exposes Massachusetts employers to all of the
treatments contained in Massachusetts’s antidiscrimination
statute (MGL c. 151B), together with damages for emotional misery,
misplaced pay, punitive damages, and attorneys’ charges. Massachusetts
employers could wish to overview their equal employment alternative
insurance policies, office conduct insurance policies, and grooming and uniform
insurance policies to make sure compliance with the newly enacted Massachusetts
CROWN Act, in addition to contemplate how administration and human assets
personnel are skilled on the influence and scope of the brand new regulation.

The content material of this text is meant to offer a basic
information to the subject material. Specialist recommendation ought to be sought
about your particular circumstances.

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