Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

Local News

March 1, 2013

Hair-raising proposition

Cosmetologists worry about certification future

Back when she was a single mother, Tiphanie Crawford said her cosmetology license was the only thing keeping her and her son afloat.

If Senate Bill 520 is passed, she said others won’t have the same opportunity.

“It would be a disaster,” says Crawford, who works as a stylist at Hair Central in Brownsburg.

SB 520 would create what is called the ERASER committee, which stands for eliminate, reduce, and streamline employee regulation. The bill has already passed the Indiana Senate, and could have grave consequences for licensed cosmetologists.

They are one of the 13 professions where the bill seeks to explore licensure with the deadline of July 2016 to recommend changes or determine whether licensing is necessary for the profession.

“This bill is bad for the industry as a whole,” said Lynn Smith, who is a campus director for PJ’s College of Cosmetology in Brownsburg. “The biggest thing is infection control. Students are taught how to keep their tools sanitary and clean so they don’t spread infection. As a school, we’re checked to make sure we’re following those guidelines. These students learn chemistry, electricity, anatomy. It’s not just doing hair. The fact is, they can mix two chemicals together and burn somebody.”

Section 13 of the bill would apply to all licensed aspects of beauty culture, something that scares Smith, especially when it comes to estheticians.

“They’re using light therapy, electro therapy, and they could kill someone potentially,” she said. “You have to know how much electricity to use, and this bill is talking about licensure across the board.”

Crawford added, “It makes us mad. We spend upwards of $12,000 ti $15,000 to go to school for 10 months. That’s a lot of money, especially for single families. That was me at one point, struggling doing hair just to make enough money to pay my way and my son’s way. If you bring in people who aren’t licensed and shove out the people that are, where are they going to go? This is like a stab in the back.”

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