SAG-AFTRA Supports Passage Of CROWN Act To Prevent Hair Discrimination

SAG-AFTRA is praising the passage Friday of the CROWN Act in the U.S. House of Representatives. The Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair Act, HR 2116, would prohibit discrimination in education and employment based on a person’s texture or style of hair. Several states, including California and New York, already have such laws.

“SAG-AFTRA performers of color routinely find themselves on sets where their hair care and styling needs are not met in an equitable manner with other performers,” the union said in a statement today. “This legislation will help address that disparate treatment on our sets nationwide and end this discriminatory practice in the workplace once and for all.”

“Now is the time to reevaluate norms in a multiracial, multiethnic nation such as the United States of America,” said SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher. “We must all refine our eyes to see that which is different from ourselves, not as wrong, but simply different. The CROWN Act addresses this with regards to natural hair of people of color. It is an exciting step towards a societal awareness of prejudice, judgment and whitewashing of culture. We must elevate ourselves as a species by embracing positively the many different threads that make up the fabric of the human experience.”

In its statement, the union thank Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ) for her leadership on the legislation, and Barbara Lee (D-CA), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) and Gwen Moore (D-WI) for their support of the bill, and Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) for reintroducing the CROWN Act in the U.S. Senate.

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