Thu | Oct 17, 2019

Discrimination based on hairstyles unacceptable says Grange

Published:Thursday | September 19, 2019 | 11:33 AM
Culture Minister Olivia Grange - File photo

Culture Minister Olivia Grange says it is unacceptable for any person in Jamaica to be discriminated against, or denied services, on the basis of how he or she wears his or her hair.

In a statement last evening, Grange underscored that the government has a policy, in keeping with the Constitution, of non-discrimination on the basis of religious or cultural practices or race.

She said her Ministry would work with government ministries, departments and agencies to ensure that guidance issued on grooming and appropriate appearance for work or school does not target specific hair textures and hairstyles, race or religion.

This comes against the background of renewed public discourse on discrimination based on hairstyles.

There is an impending court case involving a mother and a St Catherine-based school over the institution’s decision not to accept her young daughter allegedly because of her dreadlocked hairstyle.

READ: ‘She's not nasty’ 

The woman filed a claim in 2018 arguing that Kensington Primary School’s policy against the hairstyle is in breach of her daughter’s constitutional rights.

The matter is scheduled to be heard in the Constitutional Court on Monday.

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