It turns out that most members of a state board that licenses salon workers — and is pushing for insane new training requirements — have a naked conflict of interest.
The harebrained idea is to mandate that anyone who shampoos hair in a New York salon first complete half of a 1,000-hour beauty-school program. That’s more than a dozen 40-hour weeks of classes to shampoo hair. Outrageous.
The bill’s backers pretend it would make it easier for shampoo assistants to work, as they’d only have to do half the program. But salon owners have been hiring non-diploma workers for years without issue.
This legislation could cost thousands of working-class New Yorkers their jobs — just when lockdowns have cratered demand for beauty services and a fifth of city workers are unemployed.
The programs are pricey: Tuition averages more than $13,000. With 22,997 hair salons and 4,847 barbershops, the state’s 61 schools could clean up if shampoo assistants are forced into training.
And three out of the four members of the state board that licenses salon workers stand to benefit financially if it becomes law. Two, Anthony Fiore and chairwoman Michelle D’Allaird-Brenner, own beauty schools. A third, Anthony Civitano, is executive director of the American Association of Cosmetology Schools — a trade group whose members stand to make millions off the scam.
This is no theoretical conflict of interest: By pushing this idea, they’re trying to abuse their public office for their own private benefit, at the expense of the public interest. All three should resign — or be removed.
Heck, lawmakers should look to roll back all such licensing rules imposed in this field in recent years. Insiders taking a hefty cut of the action in the beauty biz is truly ugly.