Frankfort becomes 3rd city in Kentucky to adopt CROWN Act
FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Historic legislation passed in the City of Frankfort Monday night.
The City Commission passed their version of the CROWN Act: legislation designed to ensure protection against discrimination on race-based hairstyles.
They are the third Kentucky city to adopt the CROWN Act.
“We’re fighting for the color of our skin. We’re fighting for our hair,” said Frankfort City Commissioner Katrisha Waldridge.
Just Louisville and Covington have passed CROWN Act legislation, protecting everyone from all cultures from discrimination based on their hairstyle. There is nothing on the books statewide. Legislation at the state level has died multiple times.
“I had an afro until I was 13. Here, it’s just big hair; don’t care for me,” Waldridge said.
Waldridge led the mission for Frankfort passing the ordinance.
“I’m super excited about being able to hopefully get other cities on board with us and show that we are the capital city and we will lead Kentucky,” said Waldridge.
Waldridge says there had been emails from citizens with pushback. One man even addressed the commission before they voted.
“I don’t think it’s necessary for several reasons,” said Frankfort resident Dennis Krol. “One, it only refers to the Black population. It doesn’t say anything about the white population. It doesn’t say anything about the native Indians.”
Commissioners say there is no mention in the law of specific ethnic backgrounds. They say the “whereas” section does mention the Black community as an example.
“Natural origin. I think that’s pushing the envelope, as a lot of people are born here in America. The other thing is it says nothing about the Muslims. So I think this is something you all need to reconsider or maybe reconstruct,” Krol said.
However, the commission unanimously passed the ordinance just minutes later.
“This is America. We are a melting pot of many, many cultures. We have to take pride in that,” said Waldridge.
Republican state senator Whitney Westerfield filed bi-partisan support for the CROWN act this legislative session. However, it was never heard on the Senate floor.
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