SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – A bill making its way through the Utah legislature is drawing criticism and opposition from professionals in the cosmetology industry. S.B. 87, sponsored by Sen. Curt Bramble and Rep. Candice Pierucci, would exempt a cosmetologist from having to get a professional license if their services are limited to “drying, styling, arranging, dressing, curling, hot ironing, shampooing, and conditioning hair.”

Supporters of the bill argue that it’s unnecessary for someone to go through 1,600 hours of cosmetology schools to perform these limited services. Opponents said professionals need the training and education to maintain clean and safety standards, especially during a pandemic.

After listening to concerns from industry professionals, sponsoring lawmakers created a substitute bill that would require unlicensed cosmetologists to receive a hair safety permit by completing a program approved by the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing with a score of 75 percent of greater. However, opponents said this compromise is not good enough.

Connor Boyack, President of Libertas Institute joined ABC4’s Rosie Nguyen on the CW30 News at 7 p.m. for an IN FOCUS discussion on why his organization supports S.B. 87.

Lenore Gibson, owner of Collectiv Hairdressing Academy and Devin Johnson, a licensed cosmetologist and instructor discussed why they oppose the bill and the impact it could have on their industry if S.B. 87 passes.

To watch the full IN FOCUS discussion with Boyack, Gibson, and Johnson, click on the video at the top of the article.

Catch IN FOCUS discussions with ABC4’s Rosie Nguyen weeknights on the CW30 News at 7 p.m.

Rosie Nguyen is an award-winning journalist who joined the ABC4 News team as a reporter in January 2018. In September 2020, she embarked on a new journey as the anchor for the CW30 News at 7 p.m. Although she’s not out in the field anymore, she is continuing her passion for social justice and community issues through the nightly “In Focus” discussions.