Last week, New York City nail salons came under fire in a critical New York Times report that pointed out health and safety violations, along with shocking stats about NYC nail salon employee treatment and wages. Now, Allure reports that new legislation could require a grading system for NYC nail salons, with the hopes to improve conditions for both the employees administering the services and the customers receiving them.
However, it won't happen overnight, as the program would need to be approved by the state and the health department before going into practice. So, in the meantime, do a little research before you pop into your corner salon for a $15 mani-pedi.
Allure got the intel from New York City council member Rafael Espinal of the 37th district in Brooklyn. At a meeting earlier this month, the council proposed implementing a grading system for salons similar to the ones given to restaurants. So yes, it's a report card, wherein the health department will check the cleanliness and practices of each nail salon. With over 5,000 salons in the city, that could take quite some time.
Espinal told Allure that the establishments will be awarded a grade "based on how hygienic the tools are and the ingredients and chemicals they're using."
Additionally, there is a bill of rights in the works that could require salons to use chemicals that are safer for the employees that use and inhale them day in, day out. Espinal even wants to post a separate "bill of rights" for both salon workers and customers. This bills of rights could be implemented by year's end.
Here, a breakdown of all the proposed initiatives, and why they're an extremely great thing for all involved.
1. They Protect The Nail Tech
Espinal noted that the employee bill of rights is critical because "this would give the employees of nail salons the right to speak up — about the chemicals being used, for instance — without fear of being terminated. As long as the employees know their rights, it gives them confidence and protects them."
Most importantly, if the employees are well-treated, their work can also improve, because a happy, supported manicurist means a good mani.
Plus, who doesn't love their local manicurist? You spend 30 minutes up in each other's grills, so it's always better when you have a camaraderie.
2. They Protect The Customer
Espinal also envisions a customer bill of rights, where you'd be able to see your tools sterilized right before your eyes, which should alleviate some anxiety you may feel about letting salon tools near your nail beds or cuticles. You can get a mani or pedi in good conscience.
3. You Can Resume Getting Your Nails Did Without The Economic Hiccup
Getting a quick mani and pedi should be something you don't have to think too hard about. You want to get in and out, with safety, efficiency, and value. This grading system, if eventually put into practice, will help you make a choice quickly and easily, since the grade will be posted and factor into your decision. You can get your nails did without an economic hiccups.
If you were majorly bummed by the report on nail salons, since you use them, help appears to be on the way. Let's hope these initiatives are implemented. It feels like the council is on the right track.
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