Tracee Ellis Ross, Ayanna Pressley advocate for Black beauty businesses with Color Of Change
Congressman Pressley and Emmy nominated Ross spoke to Color of Change about the value of black beauty companies and the discrimination of hair
You'd think that the problems the world always had with black hair ended during the black is beautiful movement of the 1960s when black women ditched their straightening combs and boldly declared that their hair was beautiful in its natural state .
While many were offended by black women who flaunted their diaper hair, the afro became a symbol of racial pride.
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Read more: Gabrielle Union, Keke Palmer and others talk about natural hair discrimination in PPE
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Amazingly, decades later, many still seem offended by the way black women wear their hair, and in 2019 the CROWN (Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair) Act was proposed to end hair discrimination in schools and in the workplace .
Working with Dove, the National Urban League, and the Western Center on Law and Poverty, Congressman Ayanna Pressley and other elected officials pushed for the CROWN ACT to be passed.
Tracee Ellis Ross and Congresswoman Pressley joined Color Of Change in a discussion about the state of small black beauty companies and how to tackle hair discrimination.
(Photo: Getty Images)
"Black hair has been at the center of economic, political and cultural revolutions," said Tracee Ellis Ross, actress, producer and CEO of PATTERN. "The CROWN Act is an essential policy that protects the existence, dignity and humanity of blacks."
Rep. Pressley said: "It's not just about the impact on self-esteem or how it undermines ethnic pride. Hair discrimination can affect blacks' ability to learn and, consequently, our economic status. The CROWN Act would codify protection against non-discrimination, so that employers cannot discriminate based on ethnic hairstyles, and it will free us to show ourselves as our most authentic selves. "
Arisha Hatch, vice president of campaigns at Color Of Change, says it is now more time than ever to support black businesses. "Black beauty salons are essential," said Hatch.
Read more: Members of Congress work together to advance the Crown Act, which outlaws discrimination against hair
“In a world where black bodies are constantly monitored and politicized, black-owned hairdressing salons enable our freedom of choice, autonomy and self-expression. Black companies are the cultural and economic engines of our communities, but have been drastically unsupported and insufficiently funded by unequal COVID relief efforts.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, Color Of Change has been calling for the protection and justice blacks need to deal with the negative effects of COVID-19. Color Of Change and its members will continue to urge Congress to pass appropriate relief for black businesses to operate safely during the pandemic.
Color Of Change is the nation's largest online racial justice organization that helps people respond effectively to injustices in the world. More information can be found here.
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The post, Tracee Ellis Ross, Ayanna Pressley's attorney for Black Beauty Company with Color Of Change, first appeared on TheGrio.
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