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Maryland Bans Hair-Related Race Bias Among Dozens of New Laws

May 8, 2020, 9:11 PM

Maryland will ban workplace discrimination based on hairstyles and textures commonly associated with race, under legislation that became law without the governor’s signature.

The legislation (H.B. 1444/S.B. 531) adds hair characteristics including “braids, twists, and locks,” as well as “afro hairstyles” to the traits connected with race in the state’s anti-discrimination law. The law bans bias in employment, public accommodations, housing, and other areas.

The measure was among dozens of bills that Gov. Larry Hogan (R) allowed to become law Thursday without signing. The new language takes effect Oct. 1.

Maryland is the seventh state to enact a ban on...

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