Protecting Our Crowns

PETITION TO THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY OF ONTARIO

WHEREAS Black, Indigenous, and racialized people are often subject to race-based hair discrimination, including experiencing racism in schools and the workplace – resulting in negative impacts on their lives such as school-based bullying and harassment which impacts academic performance and economic impacts such as job discrimination and reprisal in the workplace for so-called "unprofessional" hair styles or texture

WHEREAS physical presentation, which includes textured hair maintenance and protective styles, is directly linked to physical safety, mental health and sense of identity, self-esteem and confidence.

WHEREAS Black, Indigenous and racialized performers with natural textured hair often arrive in their workplace of film/TV and theatre sets with professional hairstylists who have received insufficient training for working with their hair type – risking permanent damage to their physical appearance and therefore earning potential.

WHEREAS hairstyling training in Ontario currently only focusses on cutting, designing, permanent waving, chemically relaxing, straightening and colouring hair, but does not have any instruction or practice to ensure every hairstylist can service Black people’s natural hair or the textured hair of many Indigenous and/or racialized community members, whether performers or otherwise.

THEREFORE we the undersigned petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to immediately pass MPP Andrew’s motion #35 calling for the Government of Ontario and Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development which regulates the hairstyling trade profession in Ontario to amend the Hairstyling Program Standard to mandate culturally-responsive training, specific to Black and textured hair in hairstyling education and practice across Ontario.

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