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Referee who told wrestler to cut dreadlocks suspended

A person with dreadlocks
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There is a long history of racial discrimination in the US based on hair style

A US referee who told a wrestler to cut his dreadlocks or forfeit the match has been suspended for two years.

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Many posts on Twitter said that the referee’s actions were “cruel” and “humiliating”.

The New Jersey Division on Civil Rights and the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA) decided on the punishment for Mr Maloney.

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New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal said in a statement: “Student athletes should be able to compete with each other on a level playing field. Racial discrimination in the enforcement of the rules of any sport is inconsistent with the spirit of fair play.”

The NJSIAA will also provide training to wrestling officials in the state, emphasising that the rule cited in the incident is based on hair length and not on hair style.

“The training will also explain the long history of discrimination based on hair style,” the statement said.

Children from across the world took part in The Big Hair Assembly

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