Hair discrimination banned

A bill to extend employment discrimination protections was approved by lawmakers April 29.

Sen. Terrell McKinney
Sen. Terrell McKinney

LB451, sponsored by Omaha Sen. Terrell McKinney, expands the definition of race to include characteristics associated with race such as skin color, hair texture and protective hairstyles. The bill defines protective hairstyles as braids, locks and twists.

An employer may implement health and safety standards regulating characteristics associated with race as long as they are non-discriminatory and applied equally to all employees, and if good faith efforts have been made to accommodate an employee.

The Nebraska National Guard and state, county and local law enforcement agencies still may impose their own dress and grooming standards.

LB451 passed on a 40-4 vote.

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