Relaymedia

Transgender Army Veteran Turned Down By California Barber Due to Religious Views

( [email protected] ) Mar 16, 2016 11:20 AM EDT
Kendall Oliver, a transgender Army veteran who served in Afghanistan, went to a barbershop in California earlier this week. However, the owner of the barbershop refused to provide service to Oliver and told the veteran that they don't cut women's hair.
Transgender Army veteran Kendall Oliver Facebook/Kendall Oliver

Kendall Oliver, a transgender Army veteran who served in Afghanistan, went to a barbershop in California earlier this week. However, the owner of the barbershop refused to provide service to Oliver and told the veteran that they don't cut women's hair.

Richard Hernandez, the owner of the establishment, which is simply called The Barbershop, then said that he will not cut Oliver's hair, because according to him, his religion forbids him from cutting women's hair, the Washington Post reported.

Oliver, who sports a military-style haircut and wears masculine clothes, is identified as a transgender man. But for Hernandez, the 24-year-old veteran is still a woman, despite the latter specifically requesting for a men's haircut.

Still, the shop owner remained adamant and told Oliver that they don't cut women's hair. He even referred to Oliver as ma'am.

Oliver then said that the may the owner responded to the matter is discriminatory and is an insult to the LGBT community.

"It did hurt my feelings, and I don't want anyone else to experience that," Oliver said according to The Guardian. "There is a separation of Church and state. And if you have a public business, then everyone in the public should be entitled to access those services.

According to legal experts, Oliver can file a lawsuit against Hernandez and his barbershop. They noted that denying service to anyone based on sexual orientation is a violation of the state's anti-discrimination law.

When questioned regarding the incident, Hernandez did not deny refusing to provide service to Oliver. He also maintained that his establishment is a traditional men's barbershop. Hernandez then added that he turned down the veteran because of his Christian beliefs and the teachings of the bible.

"The Bible teaches us that a woman's hair is given to her for her glory, and I would not want to take away any of her glory from her," he said.

 

Tags : Transgender Army Veteran, Kendall Oliver Transgender, LGBT community, California Barbershop, LGBT discrimination