Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 39

TAKING THE STAND
after receiving numerous complaints regarding black hairstyles and
in the viral aftermath of a gut-wrenching incident in Buena, New Jersey,
in which a white referee forced a black high school wrestler to cut his
dreadlocks or forfeit the match.
The D.C. Office of Human Rights has the authority to update its guidance
for workers and employers as soon as tomorrow, providing much-needed
clarity for businesses and protection for workers. Better yet, the D.C.
Council could directly amend the language of the D.C. Human Rights
Act, as the California and New York legislatures did to their respective
states' laws this summer. In Maryland, Montgomery County passed the
CROWN Act last November, prohibiting discrimination based on a prson's
natural hairstyle. Similar legislation is also pending in multiple states
across the country, including New Jersey.

being punished by other people's ideas about what their hair should look
like. As two recent transplants to the area - coincidently from California
and New York - we hope that the D.C. government will act now to
ensure that hairstyle discrimination has no home in the District.
Melissa Pierre-Louis Washington and Mikael Rojas are Washington, D.C.-based
employment discrimination lawyers.

NOTES
1 NYC Commission on Human Rights, February 2019, Legal Enforcement Guidance
on Race Discrimination on the Basis of Hair, https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/cchr/
downloads/pdf/Hair-Guidance.pdf.

How a person styles his or her hair is a deeply personal decision, especially for black people who frequently face elevated scrutiny and expectations to conform to white norms in the workplace. In fact, when Mayor
Muriel Bowser, one of the only black mayors of a major American city, got
her first haircut in office, it made the Washington Post.

2 See McManus v. MCI Communications Corp., 748 A.2d 949, 955 (D.C. 2000).

For far too long, the hundreds of thousands of black people who help
drive all levels of the District's economy have labored under the threat of

4 NYC Commission on Human Rights Press Release, https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/
cchr/downloads/pdf/press-releases/hair-guidance-pressrelease.

Feels good

3 OHR Enforcement Guidance 17-03, Unlawful Treatment Based on Personal
Appearance, Political Affiliation and Matriculation, https://ohr.dc.gov/sites/default/
files/dc/sites/ohr/publication/attachments/OHR%20Enforcement%20guidance%20
-%20PersonalApp_92517.pdf.

to get a discount.

Tell us you're a
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could save on auto insurance
with a special member discount.

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Company, Washington, D.C. 20076; a Berkshire Hathaway Inc. subsidiary. GEICO Gecko image © 1999-2019. © 2019 GEICO
19_222278

JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2020

*

WASHINGTON LAWYER 39


https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/cchr/downloads/pdf/Hair-Guidance.pdf https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/cchr/downloads/pdf/Hair-Guidance.pdf https://ohr.dc.gov/sites/default/files/dc/sites/ohr/publication/attachments/OHR%20Enforcement%20guidance%20-%20PersonalApp_92517.pdf https://ohr.dc.gov/sites/default/files/dc/sites/ohr/publication/attachments/OHR%20Enforcement%20guidance%20-%20PersonalApp_92517.pdf https://ohr.dc.gov/sites/default/files/dc/sites/ohr/publication/attachments/OHR%20Enforcement%20guidance%20-%20PersonalApp_92517.pdf https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/cchr/downloads/pdf/press-releases/hair-guidance-pressrelease https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/cchr/downloads/pdf/press-releases/hair-guidance-pressrelease http://www.geico.com/bar/dcbar

Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020

Digital Extras
Your Voice
From Our President
Practice Management
Calendar Of Events
The Opioid Litigation Wars
The Art Of Wellness: Law Firms Get Creative
Combating Secondary Trauma
Debating The Path Forward On Health Care Reform
Taking The Stand
On Further Review
Member Spotlight
Worth Reading
Attorney Briefs
Speaking Of Ethics
Disciplinary Summaries
Community & Connections
Special Section: Counting Down To The 2020 Conference
Last Word
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Cover1
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Cover2
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 1
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 2
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 3
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Digital Extras
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 5
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Your Voice
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 7
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - From Our President
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 9
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Practice Management
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 11
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Calendar Of Events
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 13
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - The Opioid Litigation Wars
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 15
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 16
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 17
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 18
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 19
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - The Art Of Wellness: Law Firms Get Creative
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 21
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 22
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 23
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 24
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 25
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Combating Secondary Trauma
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 27
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 28
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 29
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 30
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 31
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Debating The Path Forward On Health Care Reform
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 33
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 34
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 35
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 36
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 37
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Taking The Stand
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 39
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - On Further Review
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 41
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Member Spotlight
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 43
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 44
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Worth Reading
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 46
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Attorney Briefs
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Speaking Of Ethics
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 49
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Disciplinary Summaries
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Community & Connections
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Special Section: Counting Down To The 2020 Conference
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 53
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 54
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - 55
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Last Word
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Cover3
Washington Lawyer - January/February 2020 - Cover4
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