Bullock natural hair braider bill approved by PA House Professional Licensure Committee

HARRISBURG, Nov. 15 – A bill (H.B. 1820) introduced by state Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Phila., that would create a license exemption for natural hair braiding passed the PA House Professional Licensure Committee today.

The legislation would exempt hair braiders from having to obtain a cosmetology license to practice braiding.

“Natural hair braiding has been commonplace in the African American community for centuries,” Bullock said. “The techniques have been passed from generation to generation and are learned from early childhood and do not require formal training to do. Natural hair braiding does not involve any chemical treatments, applying heat, cutting or coloring of hair.”

More than 33 states have exempted hair braiders from licensing laws, recognizing that natural hair braiding is a safe, cultural practice that is distinct from hairdressing and barbering.

“Natural hair braiding doesn’t require formal training and continues to be a technique used often within the African American community,” said state Rep. Regina Young, D-Delaware/Phila., a co-prime sponsor of the legislation. “This legislation recognizes natural hair braiding as a safe and natural cultural practice that should not require license to practice. Natural hair braiding requires simply this: a comb, a brush and a head full of hair to work with.”