In 2013, we wrote about Hooters waitress Farryn Johnson and her firing from a Hooters in Baltimore, Maryland because of the highlights she wore in her hair.
Two years ago, Johnson stated she was fired because her hair color violated employee image standards.
“My other coworkers, they all had different colors in their hair, like red and blonde highlights. I didn’t think it would be an issue,” she said.
Now two years later, Johnson has successfully won her lawsuit against Hooters. Johnson was awarded $250,000 by a Maryland arbitrator for lost wages and legal fees. The arbitrator stated that Hooters violated state and federal civil rights laws by implementing the hair policy in a manner that “adversely [affected] African-American women.”
But not everyone agrees with the judgement. Especially Hooters brand manager Ericka Whitaker, who is also black.
“As a former Hooters girl who happens to be African American, I, like countless other African-American Hooters girls today, regularly wore my hair in various shades of blond, or any other color consistent with our ‘girl next door’ image,” Whitaker argued.
The chain also stated that their former employee isn’t going to receive all of that money.
“Ms. Johnson did not receive $250,000 in back pay, but rather only $11,886.40, while her attorneys on the other hand received approximately $244,000 in attorneys’ fees,” Hooters stated.