Taalib-Din Abdul Uqdah v. District of Columbia

The Institute for Justice represented Taalib-Din Abdul Uqdah and his wife Pamela Ferrell in their successful challenge to the 1938 Cosmetology Code of the District of Columbia.

For more than a decade, Uqdah, the owner of a successful African hair-braiding salon, Cornrows & Co., was harassed by the unelected Board of Cosmetology of the District of Columbia, which wanted to impose the antiquated Cosmetology Code on Uqdah’s business, even though the practices and techniques contained in the 1938 cosmetology statute have nothing to do with and are in fact diametrically opposed to the centuries-old art of African hairstyling.

As a result of the lawsuit, the District of Columbia government deregulated its cosmetology industry allowing hairbraiders to practice their craft without unnecessary or intrusive government regulation.