Pressured! Theatre Changes Policy to Fire Employees Who Wear Dreadlocks

Tyler House
Tyler House

*Talk about a turnabout that came about a little too late. The Marcus Country Club Hills Cinema hired Honors student Tyler House after a fantastic interview, but then fired her on the first day of work because of her dreadlocks hairstyle.

After 16-year-old House shook hands with the manager who bid her a hasty adieu after declaring, ‘Dreads are not allowed,’ the disappointed teen who said she was shocked at the outcome because she had actually made the interviewer laugh, went home.

But this was not the end of the issue. The teen’s mother, Darnetta Herring, shared her confusion on the decision — which had recently been given legs via a judicial ruling by the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The ruling determined employers have the right to terminate staff who wear the hairstyle.

Herring wondered, “Why is it that dreadlocks are not permitted in your employees but it’s ok for us to spend our dreadlock money in your company? I don`t understand. They come to an African American neighborhood but they discriminate against some of us. I don`t understand it.”

House’s sister took to social media to share the experience and people became outraged. The post was shared more than a thousand times, with some even suggesting a boycott.

After getting wind of this, the theater is backsliding now. In a statement they said…

This week we learned that a job candidate at our Marcus Country Club Hills Cinema was turned away because she wore dreadlocks. Some have expressed concern, and their reaction has led us to re-examine that decision. Marcus Theatres operates in many communities across the United States, and our success is due in part to our talented team.

Our associates come to work each day committed to delivering a best-in-class experience to everyone who passes through our doors. Effective immediately, no job candidate will be disqualified because they wear dreadlocks. We are in the process of reviewing our protocols, and will update them to ensure that they reflect our professional standards and commitment to recognizing the diversity of our associates.

As lovely as that sounds, House wasn’t impressed and decided she didn’t want to work for them anyway. Maybe she was motivated by that call from the AMC Crestwood, who reached out to invite her to interview with them.




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