Nonprofit org Color Of Change — the nation’s largest online racial justice organization — has always played an integral role in rewriting the rules to pass laws to protect Black people.
The organization’s mission to tell Black stories is also led by its ability to bring together celebrities and change-makers to discuss issues plaguing Black communities and solutions to resolve them.
As part of its commitment to fight against hair discrimination, Color Of Change launched its powerful InHAIRitance event — alongside actress Tracee Ellis Ross, Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, Representative Leslie Herod, Color Of Change VP Arisha Hatch, and small-business owners Jennifer Lord and Thomasina Jackson.
The event was launched in collaboration with Dove, National Urban League and Western Center on Law and Poverty. It was created to discuss The CROWN Act — a law that would protect Black people from hair discrimination in workplaces and schools — and the state of Black-owned beauty businesses during the pandemic.
“Black hair has been at the center of economic, political, and cultural revolutions,” Ross said during the event. “The CROWN Act is an essential policy, safeguarding the existence, dignity, and humanity of Black people.”
Pressley and other elected officials have pushed to pass the CROWN ACT stating, “The CROWN Act would codify nondiscrimination protections so that employers cannot discriminate based on ethnic hairstyles, and it will liberate us to show up as our most authentic selves,” as reported by theGrio.
Outside of dissecting The CROWN Act, Color Of Change’s event put an emphasis on the importance of supporting Black businesses during this time — especially salons which have grown to be deemed essential.
“Black-owned beauty salons are one of the cultural pillars in our community, and part of the engine that fuels economic growth in our communities,” Hatch wrote in an article. “As more states move to advance The CROWN Act, it is even more important that Black beauty salon owners receive the economic relief they need and deserve to be able to survive the pandemic.”
She further explained her point during the InHAIRitance event with a powerful sentiment:
“In a world where Black people’s bodies are constantly policed and politicized, Black-owned hair salons enable our agency, autonomy, and self-expression. Black businesses are the cultural and economic engines of our communities, yet they have been drastically unsupported and under-resourced through inequitable COVID relief measures.”
Since the start of the pandemic, Color Of Change has demanded protection and justice for Black people to help them overcome the challenges that COVID-19 has presented.
According to theGrio, Color Of Change and its members will continue their fight for equality and demand Congress to pass appropriate relief efforts for Black businesses so they can operate safely and efficiently through the remainder of the pandemic.
For more information about Color Of Change, visit its website.