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San Diego hair stylist defies orders to close and moves business outside

Posted at 5:43 PM, Jul 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-16 20:43:35-04

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (KGTV) - California Gov. Gavin Newsom said indoor operations must close in the state, so some businesses like gyms and restaurants are moving outside.

For the beauty industry, there’s a divide. While Newsom and San Diego County officials said businesses can move outside, the California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology won’t allow it.

Bahar Radman is a stylist at Del Beauty Box and said she already started cutting hair in her salon’s parking lot. She said it works because there is more space to spread out, there is better airflow, she already has the cosmetology training on best hygiene practices, and she’s also taking coronavirus safety precautions, like keeping a mask on the whole time. She said of her first three outdoor clients, all were happy with the setup and already booked return appointments.

This goes against the California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology rules, though. In a statement, a spokesperson from the Department of Consumer Affairs said, “The Board of Barbering and Cosmetology understands the effect shutdowns have on businesses and is sensitive to that. As it stands at this moment, under current laws and regulations, the services cannot be performed outside. However, we are looking deeply into this issue and we're exploring options.”

RELATED: When it comes to outdoor haircuts, state won't budge

Radman said she knows her license is on the line with her decision, but she can’t afford another closure, so she’s taking the risk.

“I know by this I’m risking my license to be suspended but you know what, I have a family to feed, I am a single mom, I’m trying to live right,” she said, also adding “If gyms can do it, if restaurants can do it, why can’t we do it.”

She said many of her peers in the salon industry are either doing appointments under the table and accepting cash, or they’re falling back on unemployment money, two steps she does not want to take.

“I am a refugee. A few years ago, came to this country, I had a goal and I came to live right. So I just want to keep continue living right. So if you want to put me in jail, get my license, whatever, do it if you think that’s right and that’s fair. But I’m risking it, yes,” she said.