PEORIA - The Center for Prevention of Abuse now offers certified domestic violence training to all cosmetologists, cosmetology teachers, estheticians, esthetic teachers, hair braiders, hair braiding teachers and nail technology teachers and technicians in Central Illinois.
A new Illinois law requires cosmetologists and estheticians to complete one hour of this continuing education course by September 2019 in order for licensure renewals.
Beauty industry workers spend a lot of time with their clients which can cause them to build close relationships.
Ryan Murphy, hair salon owner, said lots of women come through their doors every day.
"We have relationships from a year-long relationship from me personally having 17-year relationships with a client and they're not just a client they're family they're like friends to us...," Murphy said.
Joyce Derenzy, chief operating officer at Center for Prevention of Abuse says clients often share personal life events with cosmetologists and estheticians.
"These are the folks that you go to that you get to know, that go through these life milestones with you um they go through the birth of your children, they go through marriages divorces, I mean its somebody that you really connect with," Derenzy said.
In the event that clients are victims of domestic abuse, the state of Illinois wants the people who provide these services to be prepared.
"It could be that cosmetologists may see some patches of missing hair, or you may have a client who doesn't want to put a cape on or you may have a client in your chair getting a haircut and the phone is just ringing off the wall, well maybe it's that abuser checking on them...so they already know that something's not right," Derenzy said.
These professionals are not considered mandatory reporters. They aren't required to alert the authorities, but are expected to provide support.
"It's our way of being able to look out for people in our chair because we have formed sometimes years of relationships with these people that are sitting in our chairs so naturally, we want to look out for them," Murphy said.
If you are a part of the beauty industry and are looking to attend training you can find more information at https://www.centerforpreventionofabuse.org/.
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