A Texas high school student told to cut off his locs has received tons of support and an invitation to the Oscars.
Gabrielle Union, Dwyane Wade, and Hair Love‘s Matthew A. Cherry have invited DeAndre Arnold to the Academy Awards after the high school student was suspended and told he could not walk at his graduation unless he cut off his locs.
During a segment on CBS This Morning, the Hair Love team—Wade and Union are producers—extended an invite to the teen. Wade told Arnold, “We love the way that you carry yourself and we wanted to do something special for you. You and your mother Sandy are the official guests of the Oscar-nominated team behind Hair Love at the 2020 Academy Awards.”
Cherry added, “We’ve all been so inspired by your story and this is the very least we can do to thank you for standing up for yourself and for your right to wear your natural hair at school.”
Arnold has also received tons of support from stars like Alicia Keys, who gifted the teen a $20,000 check from Shutterfly so he could pursue his dream of becoming a vet. And Ellen DeGeneres, who invited the teen onto her show and pleaded with the student’s school board to allow him to walk at graduation.
Inspired by Arnold’s story, the Texas Legislative Black Caucus has introduced an act to ban discrimination against natural hairstyles.