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Last updated: January 22, 2021

BREAKING NEWS: California Salons Sue Gov. Newsom

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Nail, Hair and Skin Pros Sue California Gov. Newsom


Some pro beauty owners are suing California Gov. Gavin Newsom, joining with the restaurant industry to compel immediate and permanent reopening of businesses in the state. Many of the 620,000 California hair, skin and nail pros are in their third mandated shutdown since March 2020, after previously being only allowed to work outdoors and having to limit services to cutting and styling. Rising COVID-19 cases in the state caused the Governor to again close indoor businesses, including salons, in recent months.


The Professional Beauty Federation of California’s (PFBC) Lead Counsel, Los Angeles attorney Mark Geragos, filed the suit on Jan. 21. Pro beauty industry plaintiffs named in the case include five nail salons, Pomp Salon in Stockton, Calif., and a facialist in Beverly Hills, along with restaurant owners. Pomp Salon recently made news for continuing to offer salon services during the most recent shutdown, prompting a police raid on the business.



“Instead of following the science, [the Governor and state health department] followed the lobbyists and allowed film companies to utilize hairstylists and makeup artists, while preventing the same services to be done in salons by the very same trained professionals. By definition this is ‘unequal treatment under the law,’” Geragos said in a statement released by the PBFC.



Wearing proper protective equipment and upholding vigorous sanitation standards can help mitigate the spread of COVID-19, a July 2020 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report found. “Plaintiffs are ready willing and able to follow CDC guidance for serving their respective cliental and have in fact been prepared since the start of the pandemic,” the lawsuit says.


“Cutting hair is a criminal act in only one State in the Union,” said PBFC President Ted Nelson in a statement. “Gov. Newsom is arbitrarily and needlessly destroying the livelihoods of state licensed professionals who have the formal education and training to keep their clientele safe from infections, as the CDC has acknowledged.”


California has over 3 million total positive COVID-19 cases and nearly 36,000 deaths, according to the California Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 data dashboard. The current lockdown affects 90 percent of the state’s population, and the state’s most populous regions, including the Bay Area and Southern California, remain closed for indoor services.


To read the entire lawsuit filed by PBFC, click here.