Legal Question in Discrimination Law in California

Appearance discrimination

My roommate is a 27 year old man who is a security

guard at an indian reservation casino. He is

naturally fair skinned and fair haired. On his

day off he had a professional hairstylist bleach

his hair a lighter shade of blond. Upon his

return to work, his supervisor told him he had to

change it back to its natural color or he would be

fired. He was put on suspension until his hair

was changed and was subsequently demoted and given

a pay cut. He had questioned his supervisors

right to demand he change his hair color back.

Why is it aceptable for a woman to change her hair

color but not a man? In the employee handbook it

states no "extremes" in appearance, but blond is a

natural color of hair. Does he have any case


Asked on 11/02/99, 1:07 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Thomas Pavone Pavone & Cohen

Re: Appearance discrimination

Generally an employer may enforce reasonable appearance rules. This situation may present a potential sex discrimination issue.

Read more
Answered on 11/06/99, 2:05 pm

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