Connecticut passes CROWN Act to ban discrimination against natural hair

Connecticut voted to pass the CROWN act, joining California, New York and others to ban such discrimination

Discriminating against natural hairstyles will soon be illegal in Connecticut, the latest state to prohibit prejudice against such styles in schools and workplaces.

The state voted to pass The CROWN Act (Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural hair) in a 33-0 vote to be signed into law by Gov. Ned Lamont.

"This measure is critical to helping build a more equitable society, and I look forward to signing it into law in the coming days," Lamont said in a tweet earlier this week. 

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Black women are 1.5 times more likely to be "sent home from the workplace" because of their hair, according to figures shared by the CROWN Act's official coalition, which aims to promote safety and inclusivity for people of color who wear their hair naturally. The group further says 80% of Black woman have felt the need to change their hair to "fit in at the office."

The Constitution State follows several other states to pass legislation that bans discriminating against an individual based on hairstyle or hair texture. (iStock). 

The Constitution State follows several other states to pass legislation that bans discriminating against an individual based on hairstyle or hair texture. (iStock). 

"When a Black man or woman shows up for a job interview or to work, they should never be judged based on their hairstyle," Lamont had previously said of the bill, FOX61 Hartford reported. Their work product, commitment, dedication, and work ethic should be the sources of their success. This measure is critical to helping build a more equitable society, and I urge the Senate to pass this bill so I can put my signature on it and we can get this law into our statute books."

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The Constitution State follows several other states to pass legislation that bans discriminating against an individual based on hairstyle or hair texture. In 2019, California became the first state to pass the CROWN Act, while New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland, Colorado and Washington have also made discrimination against natural hair illegal. According to the Official Campaign of the CROWN Act, 16 individual municipalities across the country have adopted it into law, while over two dozen states currently have it on the agenda.