Analysis

Synopsis:

 Amended Synopsis 2, February 3, 2021:

HJCa2/HB 29: The House Judiciary Committee amendment of House Bill 29 relates to race. Prohibits the imposition of discipline, discrimination or disparate treatment in schools based on the hair or cultural or religious headdresses of a student. Defines terms in the Public School Code and the Human Rights Act. The effective date of the provisions of this act is July 1, 2021.

Original Synopsis 1, January 01, 2021:

House Bill 29 (HB 29) prohibits the imposition of discipline, discrimination or disparate treatment in schools based on the hair or cultural headdresses of a student. HB 29 adds three new terms to the Public School Code and the Human Rights Act, for the purpose of this act. HB 29 is effective on July 1, 2021.

Analysis:

 House Bill 29 (HB 29) makes changes to: 
•	School Discipline Policies-Students May Self-Administer Certain Medications, Section 22-5-4.3 NMSA 1978; 
•	Charter Schools' Rights and Responsibilities-Operation, Section 22-8B-4 NMSA 1978; and 
•	Human Rights Act-Definitions, Section 28-1-2 NMSA 1978.

HB 29 purpose is to prohibit certain disciplinary actions or disparate treatment towards students, as follows:
•	No local school board will allow for the imposition of discipline, discrimination or disparate treatment against a student based on the student's race or culture or because of the student's use of protective hairstyles or cultural headdresses.

HB 29 has added the following three new definitions to the Public School Code and the Human Rights Act, to clarify this new rule as follows:
•	Cultural Headdresses includes burkas, head wraps or other headdresses used as part of an individual's personal cultural beliefs;
              
•	Protective Hairstyles includes such hairstyles as braids, locs, twists, tight coils or curls, cornrows, bantu knots, afros, weaves, wigs or head wraps; and
                
•	Race includes traits historically associated with race, including hair texture, length of hair, protective hairstyles or cultural headdresses.

HB 29 is effective on July 1, 2021.

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