BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) -The Beckley Crown Ordinance, an ordinance that bans discrimination against natural hairstyles and textures, was recently passed through the Beckley Common Council, making it the second municipality in the state to pass such an ordinance.
“We really worked hard in trying to raise consciousness about race-based hair discrimination, so to be the second municipality to get such an act passed and get the ordinance passed on the city level is just truly amazing,” says Dr. Kristi Dumas, a human rights commissioner.
Following this achievement, Beckley Crown met at city hall for a celebratory photoshoot that highlights positivity in diversity through different hairstyles. But what started as a simple photoshoot became a groundbreaking statement in human rights for the City of Beckley and even the state of West Virginia overall.
“I worked with my publicist to take it to another level,” she says. “We know that a lot of people locally know about the ordinance and have celebrated with us, but we really thought that it was such a huge accomplishment, that we wanted to let the world know.”
Now the world really is starting to know. Soon after one of the photos was released on a national level, it was picked up by global media outlets. The photo has now been seen by around 11 million viewers, bringing a lot of positive attention to the area.
“We are elated. Because that was the whole point, it was so much bigger than the Crown Ordinance, it was really sending the message about diversity inclusion and that Beckley is doing great things.”