A 17-year-old black high school student who got suspended from school over his hair locs and his mother sued Texas leaders for not enforcing a law that prohibits hair discrimination, reports The New York Times.
Darryl George and his mother Darresha George filed a federal civil rights lawsuit on Saturday against Gov. Greg Abbott and Attorney General Ken Paxton, saying that state leaders failed to enforce the CROWN Act, a Texas law that makes it illegal for schools to discriminate against people with hairstyles “commonly or historically associated with race.”
This law went into effect on Sep. 1, one day after Darryl got suspended from school. Officials at Barbers Hill High School in Mont Belvieu, Texas said that the hair violated the district’s dress code, which mandates that male student’s hair “will not extend, at any time, below the eyebrows or below the earlobes” or “below the top of a T-shirt collar.”
Darryl has locs that he pins on his head in a barrel roll, and when his locs are not pinned up, his hair falls below that length. According to the lawsuit, he wears the locs as an “expression of cultural pride.”
The lawsuit also accuses Mr. Abbott and Mr. Paxton of “purposely or recklessly” causing Ms. George and Darryl emotional distress by not intervening, citing that Ms. George has suffered from stress and that she had a series of seizures.
With the lawsuit, Ms. George and Darrly are seeking a temporary restraining order to stop Darryl’s suspension while a federal court works on the case.