Tangled up in the process: Should a criminal history bar you from a career in cosmetology?

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Amanda Spillane of Philadelphia was denied a cosmetology license because of her criminal history. (Courtesy of the Institute for Justice)

Amanda Spillane of Philadelphia was denied a cosmetology license because of her criminal history. (Courtesy of the Institute for Justice)

Before passing the licensing exam to become a cosmetologist in Pennsylvania, you must first hold up under under scrutiny to prove that you are of “good moral character.” But the requirement is so loosely defined that even those who have gone to great lengths to turn their lives around can be denied. On this episode of The Why, WHYY reporter Trenae Nuri explains why those who’ve found themselves on the losing end of the process are now filing a lawsuit seeking to change it.

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