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Salon owners rally at the Capitol, calling for the reopening of indoor services

Salon owners and beauticians from across California hope to open a dialogue with lawmakers, pointing to the difficulties of operating outdoors.

SACRAMENTO, Calif — Dozens of salon owners and beauticians from across California made their way to the capitol steps to demand not just the reopening of their salon services, but also to reclassify how their industry is being looked at right now.

The “Pro Beauty Rally,” organized by Oakland salon owner Alicia Orabella, is pushing for all salons to reopen for indoor service because they say working outdoors is not safe or sanitary. She also points out that grouping the beauty industry in the same boat as the food service industry is not fair because they offer different services.

After briefly reopening early in the summer, salons and other personal care services were forced to close a second time. Shortly after the second closing, the state allowed these businesses to operate outdoors, much to the dismay of the business owners themselves. 

Jo Cameron, and aesthetican from Hollister, said even before Covid-19, sanitation was an important part of her industry. She and other protesters said they want to open a dialogue with lawmakers to find long-term solutions in order to help keep the beauty industry open for good during the pandemic.

During their protest, mannequins were used to demonstrate show how hard it is to cut hair outside. Robin Spencer, another hair stylist from Hollister, said the only service she can provide is dry haircuts and, depending on the weather of the day, that has also proven difficult at times.

“It is hard because the hair blows all over and we are not able to use water except for a squirt bottle,” Spencer said.

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