ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., Sept. 22, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The CROWN Coalition, a national alliance founded by Dove, National Urban League, Western Center on Law & Poverty and Color Of Change, along with over 70 CROWN Act supporting organizations, commend the U.S. House of Representatives for passing the CROWN Act of 2020, making the federal bill one step closer to being made into law.
Led by Congressman Cedric Richmond (D-Louisiana) and introduced only nine months ago, The CROWN Act legislation (H.R. 5309) provides legal protection from hair discrimination based on the texture of natural hair or hairstyles such as braids, locs, twists and knots. The acronym CROWN stands for Create a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair.
"It was an honor to author this groundbreaking legislation with my colleagues Congresswomen Lee (CA-13), Fudge (OH-11), and Pressley (MA-07)," stated Congressman Cedric Richmond (LA-02). "Their partnership, along with Adjoa B. Asamoah of the Crown Coalition and key legal stakeholders was integral in making this historic moment possible."
"Dove is proud to be a co-founder and champion of the CROWN Act, which not only helps create a more equitable beauty experience for all people, but helps address this unacceptable form of discrimination. We applaud Congressman Cedric Richmond and the U.S. House of Representatives for taking this action. We will continue to work with The CROWN Coalition to ensure protection of Black women, children, and men from hair discrimination, a form of racial discrimination," said Esi Eggleston Bracey, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Beauty and Personal Care at Unilever North America.
"A federal bill is exactly what is needed to address the racial injustice of hair discrimination on a national level," said Marc Morial, former mayor of New Orleans and CEO of the National Urban League, a founding member of the CROWN Coalition. "With the passing of The CROWN Act in the U.S. House of Representatives, we now must put pressure on the Senate to pass this legislation and expand anti-discrimination protections to include hair texture and hairstyles inherent to race."
"The federal CROWN Act of 2020 is an important and overdue step toward achieving civil rights and economic equity in this country," said Arisha Hatch, Vice President, Color Of Change. "Ridding our schools, workplaces and communities of hostile hairstyle discrimination and racist practices will finally grant Black children with natural hairstyles the education, dignity, and employment opportunities they were unjustly robbed of. Color Of Change applauds Congressman Richmond for his unwavering leadership in driving this bill to passage, and we thank our partners in the CROWN Coalition for their lasting commitment to ensuring that natural beauty is protected for all Americans, no matter the state they live in or the color of their skin."
The inaugural CROWN Act was signed into law by Governor Newsom in California on July 3, 2019, and went into effect January 1, 2020. The law has been passed in 7 states (CA, NY, NJ, VA, CO, WA, MD) and 2 municipalities (Cincinnati, OH and Montgomery County, MD). Twenty-four (24) additional states haven introduced the legislation. With the passing of The CROWN Act in the House of Representatives, the federal bill now advances to the U.S. Senate.
The CROWN Act of 2020 is not the first time federal lawmakers have taken action against grooming policies that have a disparate impact on people of color. In 2014, the Congressional Black Caucus, led by then Chairwoman Rep. Marcia Fudge, appealed to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to reconsider U.S. Military rules for hairstyles that lacked cultural sensitivity and gave little regard to what it takes for women of color to maintain their natural hair. As a result, military grooming standards were reviewed and adjusted to ensure fair and respectful consideration of a diverse military force.
"As reports of racial discrimination at work and in schools are increasing, it is essential that lawmakers recognize where more protections against it can, and should be, strengthened," said Jessica Bartholow of the Western Center on Law and Poverty. "We are so grateful to Congressman Richmond and the Congressional Black Caucus for their leadership on this issue and are eager to continue the work with other CROWN Act coalition members and allies until all workers and all pupils in our country are free from racial discrimination based on the texture or style of their hair. Passing this Act is an essential step to reducing school pushout of Black children and improving job opportunities for Black workers."
Join the movement that's creating real change and aiding in the efforts to ensure Black men, women and children feel confident in expressing themselves. Sign the petition at www.TheCROWNAct.com to help us end discrimination and request that the U.S. Senate passes the CROWN Act of 2020 on the federal level.
About The CROWN Coalition
The CROWN Coalition is a national alliance created in early 2019 by founding members Dove, National Urban League, Color Of Change and Western Center on Law and Poverty. This alliance was formed to create a more equitable and inclusive experience for Black people through the advancement of hair discrimination legislation, known as the CROWN Act. The Coalition now includes strategic alliances with over 70 community and advocacy organizations that are doing critical work to advance racial equity.
The CROWN Coalition and The CROWN Act are supported by the following organizations: National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), NAACP Legal Defense Fund, Inc. Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc., Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. The Links, Inc., Jack and Jill of America, Incorporated, National Black Caucus of State Legislators (NBCSL), National Organization of Black Elected Legislative Women (NOBEL), African American Mayors Association, Black Women's Agenda, National Council of Negro Women, Black Women's Roundtable, National Women's Law Center, Black Women Organized for Political Action, National Action Network, National Black MBA Association, Inc., M.O.B.B. United (Mothers of Black Boys), National Black Child Development Institute, Inc., Association of Black Psychologists, United States Black Chambers, Inc., Black Business Association, Black Women for Wellness Action Project , Greater Sacramento Urban League, National Coalition of 100 Black Women-Sacramento Chapter, EMERGE: Natural Beauty Industry Alliance, Beauty and Barber Empowerment Center, Ujima, Inc., Hip Hop Sisters Foundation, Curly Girl Collective, EarthGirl, Alliance for Boys and Men of Color, Equal Rights Advocates, Public Health Advocates, American Academy of Pediatrics, Courage Campaign, Greenlining Institute, Anti-Defamation League, Women in Public Policy, Inc., Professional Beauty Association, Service Employees International Union (SEIU) , California Black Health Network, Black American Political Association of California, California Black Chamber of Commerce, Women's Foundation of California, National Association of Social Workers-California Chapter, California Employment Lawyers Association, California Civil Liberties Advocacy, California Teachers Association, AFSCME California American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, ACLU New Jersey, ACLU California, ACLU of Northern California, ACLU of Southern California, ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties, ACLU Georgia, Berkeley City Council, National Lawyers Guild – Sacramento Chapter, Los Angeles County Office of Education, Los Angeles Community College District, City and County of San Francisco Department on the Status of Women, Impact EDI, National Association of University Women - Windy City Branch, Natural Hair Industry Convention, NYC Black Women's Political Club, NYC Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Save A Girl Save a World, YWCA USA, YWCA White Plains and Central Westchester, and YWCA of the Greater Capital Region.
Expanded CROWN Coalition - Unilever has joined Dove to help expand the agenda of the CROWN Coalition. The CROWN Coalition has expanded its efforts beyond legal protection against race-based hair discrimination to four strategic pillars of action: 1) reducing systemic bias and discrimination, 2) reimagining public safety, 3) supporting safe and fair voting access, and 4) driving economic equity. Dove also created the CROWN fund with $5MM of support over 5 years.
As part of the expanded CROWN 2.0 initiative, we are expanding our work with bias and discrimination. As part of the work Unilever is doing, Dove Men+Care recently announced a partnership with the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) called "Commit to C.A.R.E." (Care About Racial Equity). This partnership is focused on reducing bias and discrimination against Black men and boys by debunking the harmful myths and stereotypes that often lead to increased violence against the Black community.
Dove started its life in 1957 in the US, with the launch of the Beauty Bar, with its patented blend of mild cleansers and ¼ moisturizing cream. Dove's heritage is based on moisturization – proof not promises grew Dove from a Beauty Bar into one of the world's most beloved beauty brands.
Women have always been our inspiration and since the beginning, we have been wholly committed to providing superior care to all women and to championing real beauty in our advertising. Dove believes that beauty is for everyone. That beauty should be a source of confidence and not anxiety. Dove's mission is to inspire women everywhere to develop a positive relationship with the way they look and realize their potential for beauty.
For 60 years, Dove has been committed to broadening the narrow definition of beauty in the work they do. With the 'Dove Real Beauty Pledge,' Dove vows to:
- Portray women with honesty, diversity and respect. We feature women of different ages, sizes, ethnicities, hair color, type and style.
- Portray women as they are in real life, with zero digital distortion and all images approved by the women they feature.
- Help young people build body confidence and self-esteem through the Dove Self-Esteem Project, the biggest provider of self-esteem education in the world.
About Unilever North America
Unilever is one of the world's leading suppliers of Beauty & Personal Care, Home Care, and Foods & Refreshment products with sales in over 190 countries and reaching 2.5 billion consumers a day. In the United States and Canada, the portfolio includes brand icons such as: Axe, Ben & Jerry's, Breyers, Degree, Dollar Shave Club, Dove, Hellmann's, Klondike, Knorr, Lever 2000, Lipton, Love Beauty and Planet, Magnum, Nexxus, Noxzema, Pond's, Popsicle, Pure Leaf, Q-tips, Seventh Generation, Simple, Sir Kensington's, St. Ives, Suave, Talenti Gelato & Sorbetto, TAZO, TIGI, TRESemmé and Vaseline. All of the preceding brand names are trademarks or registered trademarks of the Unilever Group of Companies.
Unilever's Sustainable Living Plan (USLP) underpins the company's strategy and commits to:
- Helping more than a billion people take action to improve their health and well-being by 2020.
- Halving the environmental impact of our products by 2030.
- Enhancing the livelihoods of millions of people by 2020.
The USLP creates value by driving growth and trust, eliminating costs and reducing risks. In 2018, the company's Sustainable Living Brands grew 69% faster than the rest of the business, compared to 46% in 2017.
Since 2010 we have been taking action through the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan to help more than a billion people improve their health and well-being, halve our environmental footprint and enhance the livelihoods of millions of people as we grow our business. We have already made significant progress and continue to expand our ambition – most recently committing to ensure 100% of our plastic packaging is fully reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025. While there is still more to do, we are proud to have been recognized in 2018 as sector leader in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index and as the top ranked company in the GlobeScan/SustainAbility Global Corporate Sustainability Leaders survey, for the eighth-consecutive year.
About National Urban League
The National Urban League is a historic civil rights organization dedicated to economic empowerment in order to elevate the standard of living in historically underserved urban communities. The National Urban League spearheads the efforts of its 90 local affiliates through the development of programs, public policy research and advocacy, providing direct services that impact and improve the lives of more than 2 million people annually nationwide. Visit www.nul.org and follow us on Twitter and Instagram: @NatUrbanLeague.
About Color Of Change
Color Of Change is the nation's largest online racial justice organization. We help people respond effectively to injustice in the world around us. As a national online force driven by more than 1.4 million members, we move decision-makers in corporations and government to create a more human and less hostile world for Black people and our allies in America. Our campaigns and initiatives win changes that matter. By designing strategies powerful enough to fight racism and injustice—in politics and culture, in the work place and the economy, in criminal justice and community life, and wherever they exist—we are changing both the written and unwritten rules of society. We mobilize our members to end practices and systems that unfairly hold Black people back, and champion solutions that move us all forward.
About Western Center on Law & Poverty
Western Center fights for justice and system-wide change to secure housing, health care, racial justice and a strong safety net for low-income Californians. Western Center attains real-world policy solutions for our clients through litigation, legislative and policy advocacy, and technical assistance and legal support for the state's legal aid programs. Western Center is California's oldest and largest legal services support center.
SOURCE The CROWN Coalition