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April 22, 2024

Expanded Protections Under CROWN Act Passes Committee

DENVER, CO - The House State, Civic, Military, & Veterans Affairs Committee today passed a bill sponsored by Representatives Leslie Herod and Naquetta Ricks that would expand hairstyle discrimination protections under the CROWN Act of 2020 to include hair length. HB24-1451 passed by a vote of 7-3.

“I proudly passed the CROWN Act in 2020 to protect Coloradans’ right to express their identity and culture through their hairstyle, and this legislation will expand these protections to ensure no one can be discriminated against based on the length of their hair,” said Rep. Leslie Herod, D-Denver. “This bill would expand protections by making it explicitly illegal to discriminate against someone based on their hair length. Every Coloradan, especially Black, indigenous, and people of color, deserve the right to represent their culture through their hairstyle without facing repercussions.”

“Hair discrimination has forced generations of Coloradans, especially women, to change their hairstyles to adhere to Western societal norms,” said Rep. Naquetta Ricks, D-Aurora. “Colorado legislators took a huge step in 2020 to pass the CROWN Act, creating protections for Coloradans who want to wear a hairstyle that’s rooted in their culture. Our legislation adds further protections from hairstyle discrimination to include hair length, allowing for more hairstyle options that are protected under the CROWN Act.”

In 2020, Representative Herod sponsored the original CROWN Act legislation that explicitly prohibits discrimination on the basis of hair texture, hair type, and protects hairstyles like dreadlocks, twists, tight coils or curls, cornrows, bantu knots, afros and headwraps. HB24-1451 would add hair length to Colorado’s CROWN Act of 2020.

In February 2024, a Texas judge ruled that a school had the right to discipline a student over his hair length because it was not explicitly protected under Texas’ CROWN Act.

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