A Major Win for Nail-Salon Workers

Photo: Justin Lane/epa/Corbis

Last month, Governor Cuomo vowed to protect salon workers in the wake of a New York Times' exposé, which unearthed illegal, unsafe, and inhumane working conditions. Today the New York State Assembly moved to support that vow, passing sweeping legislation to protect workers in nail salons. The bill will toughen punishment for operating unlicensed nail salons, including closure, fines, and imprisonment. Any violation of the new law will be considered a misdemeanor offense.

The proposed law also looks to protect unlicensed workers with a lower examination fee to obtain a license, and by requiring salon owners to pay unlicensed workers as they train for the exam. Governor Cuomo is expected to sign the bill into law soon. As for after that, Miriam Yeung, executive director of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, said it best: "We urge states across the country to follow this example and take similar action.”