OSAKA (TR) – An 18-year-old girl in Habikino City has filed a suit seeking compensation after her high school forced her to dye her naturally brown hair due to a rule about students being required to have black hair, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Oct. 27).
According to the complaint filed with the Osaka District Court, the girl, a third-year student at Kaifukan High School, is seeking 2.2 million yen in damages from Osaka Prefecture due to anguish caused by her being forced to color her hair black.
“The dyeing damaged the health of the scalp and hair,” the plaintiff claims. “[Natural] physical features were negated and mental anguish resulted.”
The complaint adds that the school has an obligation to ensure that students are allowed to be educated in a healthy environment. The plaintiff contends that the treatment by the school is “illegal.”
Black hair as a rule
The girl entered the school in the spring of 2015. Prior to her admission, her mother told the school that the girl had naturally brown hair. However, the school informed the woman that she could not attend.
The girl then underwent dyeing treatments to turn her hair black, but her scalp began to develop a rash around the spring of last year.
The girl’s mother lodged a complaint with the school, but the request was denied, with officials saying students must have black hair as a rule.
Thereafter, a teacher at the school said the dyeing treatments the girl was undergoing were insufficient. Every four days, she was instructed to dye her hair. She stopped attending classes that September.
The following month, the girl was not allowed to participate in a festival due her hair color. During an interview with the girl’s mother, the school told her, “Even a blonde-haired foreign exchange student dyed her hair black.”
Dropped from school register
This past April, the school deleted the girl’s name from the register of names of students. Parents of students of the school were told that she had dropped out.
The girl has yet to resume attending classes.
A representative of the Osaka Board of Education told the Asahi Shimbun (Oct. 27), “With the matter still pending, we have no comment.”