Since 1999, the Professional Beauty Federation of California has striven to give voice to California’s 620,000 hair/skin/nails licensed professionals and 52,000 licensed barbering/beauty establishments. In recent months, we have been very active in trying to get our so-called “non-essential” but safe businesses back in operation, including a federal lawsuit filed against Governor Newsom on May 12 and a concerted #OpenSalonsNow campaign.
We have been frustrated by this Administration’s lack of transparency, lack of curiosity to reach out to industry experts and their own state regulatory board. There’s been no legislative deliberations, no public hearings. No regulatory adoption process. And no acknowledgement of the high standards of licensure set by our State Board of Barbering & Cosmetology.
While we welcome today’s announcement to reopen nail salons by Dr. Gahly, it was yet another act of fiat that leaves our skin care professionals out in the cold — or rather California’s record heat and smoke! 95% of these Estheticians are women, as are their spa establishment owners, the quintessential small businesses upon which our state’s economy is so dependent. What “data and science” justify dividing our industry into such a caste system, with women in our industry remaining at the bottom of the reopening calculus, now going on 7 months?
And continuing to give County health officers ultimate veto over our STATE licensed industry is unworkable, given those municipal bureaucrats haven’t regulated our industry since 1927! How many of them will heed Dr. Gahly’s “green light” for nail salons, and how long will their local deliberations take before they allow these safe salons to return indoors?
They are ignorant of the State Board approved education and training that all of our hair/skin/nails professionals complete before passing the State Board licensing exam, all of which is based on consumer safety. Our licensed technicians know how to avoid cross-contamination and maximize disinfection … that’s what they’ve been trained and licensed to do! Moreover, our licensed establishments have invested considerable resources into PPE and other COVID-compliant safety protocols, which the CDC publicly endorsed back in July.
Stop dividing our industry into have’s and have-not’s. Treat all hair/skin/nails professionals with the respect their state license deserves. We call upon Governor Newsom and all 58 County Health officers to #OpenSalonsNow … all of them!