JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — As of the beginning of the month — nearly a year following the passage of legislation — Missourians can simply watch a four-hour video to complete the necessary training to become a legal hair braider.
“It means that hair braiders finally have the ability to go and earn an honest living without having to obtain extensive cosmetology licenses and [pay] a lot of money in tuition that didn’t teach them anything about hair braiding,” said Rep. Shamed Dogan.
As part of a successful effort to loosen “unnecessary” licensing restrictions, the 2018 Missouri General Assembly rolled back the requirement that those seeking to braid hair obtain a cosmetology license and undergo hundreds of hours of schooling.
With the legislation, Dogan’s HB 1500, having passed last year and signed into law, those seeking to braid hair only need to complete an online instructional video to obtain a certificate of registration.
Now, roughly a year later, the online training course and certificate are available on the Division of Professional Registrations webpage. The course consists of a four-hour video hosted through the Cosmetology Education Group, a multi-state approved and accredited online training and re-certification site.
Following the completion of the video, Missourians can apply for a certificate of registration to braid hair.
“It is going to help create jobs and help open up small businesses,” said Dogan. “It is something a lot of people in the African American community have wanted for a long time because government puts too many burdens on everyone, and particularly people of color, who want to start small businesses. And this is just one step in eliminating some of those barriers.”
Dogan credited numerous individuals before him, from Sen. Jamilah Nasheed to Tameka Stigers to Connie Johnson, for the work they put into the passage of the legislation.
Alisha Shurr is a reporter for the Missouri Times and Missouri Times Magazine. She joined the Missouri Times in January 2018 after working as a copy editor for her hometown newspaper in Southern Oregon. Alisha is a graduate of Kansas State University. Contact Alisha at firstname.lastname@example.org.