UK’s First Hair Code Launched

by | Dec 9, 2020

The UK’s first hair code has been launched by a group of young black activists, which is designed to prevent discrimination based upon hair style or texture.

The Independent reports that The Halo Collective have launched the ‘Halo Code’ “which asks organisations to commit to celebrating natural hairstyles, rather than penalising students and employees”.

 

Image credit: @thehalocltv

 

The Halo Collective

 

The Halo Collective are an alliance of organisations and individuals who are working to create a future without hair discrimination. The Halo Collective was founded by young Black organisers from The Advocacy Academy.

 

Their mission is to end hair inequality for good. 

 

On the Halo Collective’s website, they state that “Hair discrimination remains a source of racial injustice with serious consequences for Black people in the UK. Despite hair being a protected racial characteristic under the law, there is a widely held belief that Black hairstyles are not suited for formal settings, and may be unhygienic, messy, disruptive, or unkempt. These ideas strike at the freedom and dignity of Black people and serve no purpose other than to instil shame in us about our Blackness. No one should have to change their natural or protective hairstyle in order to thrive. Together, we will ensure that all Black people can learn, work, and live free from hair discrimination”.

 

Image credit: @thehalocltv

 

The Halo Code

Employers are welcomed to adopt the Halo Code, to ensure Black employees won’t face discrimination because of their Afro-textured hair.

 

“Despite hair being a protected racial characteristic under the law, there is a widely held belief that Black hairstyles are inappropriate, unattractive, and unprofessional,” explains Edwina Omokaro, the 21-year-old co-founder of the Halo Collective. “We’ve been suspended from school, held back in our careers, and made to feel inferior by racist policies and attitudes. These ideas strike at the freedom and dignity of Black people and serve no purpose other than to instil shame in us about our Blackness. No one should have to change their natural or protective hairstyle in order to thrive. Together, we will ensure that all Black people can learn, work, and live free from hair discrimination.”

 

Stylist reports that “Unilever UK, parent company of Dove, has become the first employer to adopt the Halo Code, with more schools and companies to be announced in the coming weeks”.

 

Find out more about the Halo Collective here.

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