SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act may now also protect a person’s hairstyle or hair texture from discrimination.

Senate Bill 188 would add both to the list of things not allowed to be used while determining employment or housing.

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The current California Fair Employment and Housing Act states: “it is unlawful to engage in specified discriminatory employment practices, including hiring, promotion, and termination based on certain protected characteristics, including race, unless based on a bona fide occupational qualification or applicable security regulations. The act also prohibits housing discrimination based on specified personal characteristics, including race.”

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Those characteristics include:

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  • Race
  • Religious Beliefs
  • Sex
  • Age

If passed and signed into law, SB 188 would expand those characteristics to include ” traits historically associated with race, including, but not limited to, hair texture and protective hairstyles, and would define protective hairstyles for purposes of these provisions.”