Hair styles

Illinois Law Would Prohibit School Policies on “Historically Race-Associated” Hairstyles | Best Stories

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND) – Illinois Statehouse law would make it harder to discriminate against people of color based on their hair style.

SB817 would make it illegal for schools to discriminate against students for hair styles associated with race.

“Natural hair is there, and we should be able to wear our hair however we want,” said NAACP President Teresa Haley.

The bill was debated at an education committee hearing on Tuesday. Chicago-area Senator Mike Simmons introduced legislation that would prevent school districts from having dress code policies that “apply to hairstyles, including hairstyles historically associated with race or texture. hair including, but not limited to, protective hairstyles such as braids, locks. , and twists “

“What I want to do with this bill is help parents allow their children to present themselves as they are without outdated manuals and hairstyle policing policies,” the senator said.

For some lawmakers, a concern with the legislation is the punishment for schools that would withhold a level of funding for the school, but that would not be a permanent hold.

“We’re not taking the money out,” Simmons said. “We just put it aside, and as soon as you comply, which is a manual that takes the language out of hair styles, we return that increase to you immediately.”

Diamond Jackson, a recent college graduate and vice president of the Illinois branch of the NAACP, says she supports the legislation.

“I go back and forth between two identities,” Jackson said. “When my hair is straight, I am treated differently than when it is natural.”

Senator Simmons said he would work with his colleagues to discuss the sanction for schools over the next few days and that he hopes to get it passed by the education committee next week and then be put to a vote. full in the Senate.

Another bill, known as the CROWN Act, would ban discrimination based on hairdressing in the workplace. He is waiting to be heard in the Senate.