ULTC President and CEO Quoted in Article on the “Crown Act”

A measure before the Minnesota Legislature would ban discrimination based on hair textures and styles commonly associated with blacks, such as braids, locs and twists. The proposal follows the recent passage of laws banning hair discrimination in California, New Jersey and New York to send a message that blacks should not have to conform their hair to Eurocentric standards to be accepted in schools and workplaces.

The issue even came up during Sunday night’s Academy Awards broadcast, when director Matthew A. Cherry mentioned race-based hair discrimination when he accepted an Oscar for his short film “Hair Love,” about a father learning to do his daughter’s hair. DeAndre Arnold attended the Oscars as Cherry’s guest after making national headlines when he was told he could not walk at his high school graduation in Texas unless he cut his dreadlocks — and he refused.

The Crown Act, as the legislation is known nationally, has been introduced in Congress and 22 state legislatures; the Colorado House passed a hair discrimination ban Wednesday. A survey of white and black women commissioned by backers of the Crown Act found that black women are 80% more likely to agree that they have to change their hair from its natural state to fit in at the office.

Excerpt from an article published Feb. 14, 2020 in the Star Tribune.  Read the full story here.

The Crown Act:  https://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/bills/Info/HF3103/…/2019/0

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Ron Edwards served as a member and chair of the Board of Minneapolis Urban League for over 10 years. His service on the Board ended in 1986. He was an activist chair and led the organization in facing difficult challenges to the Black community including housing discrimination, segregation in public employment and police brutality. He was an unapologetic and tireless advocate for equity, justice and power for Black people.

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