Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Black Jacksonville firefighter disciplined over his hair


A group speaking on behalf of Black firefighters within the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department says an issue over hair is being used against some firefighters. The question is whether firefighters should be allowed to have braids and dreadlocks — or whether they create a safety issue.

The young firefighter whose incident sparked the debate didn’t want to be identified, but he is making a name for himself when it comes to the fire department and its policies about hair, hair length, safety, grooming, and the way firefighters appear in public.

In a letter obtained by News4JAX that was sent to the fire union and JFRD officials, the firefighter, who was to work an overtime shift at Fire Station 1, said the chief there told him he had to go home and lose overtime pay or go in the bathroom to cut his hair because it was too thick. He chose to go home.

Read the rest of this story at WJCT News partner News4Jax.