Michigan father sues school staff for RM4.1m for trimming his daughter’s hair without consent

A Michigan father files a RM4.17-million lawsuit against Mount Pleasant Public School staff for trimming daughter’s hair. — Picture via Instagram/Jimmy Hoffmeyer
A Michigan father files a RM4.17-million lawsuit against Mount Pleasant Public School staff for trimming daughter’s hair. — Picture via Instagram/Jimmy Hoffmeyer

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KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 20 — A Michigan father decided to sue a school employee who trimmed his 7-year-old daughter’s hair without his consent.

Jimmy Hoffmeyer, sued Mount Pleasant Public Schools’ librarian, and a teacher’s assistant for US$1 million (RM4.17 million), claiming his daughter’s constitutional rights were infringed due to racial discrimination and ethnic intimidation, reported People.com

Hoffmeyer explained to USA Today that his daughter Jurnee needed an asymmetrical haircut as her classmate chopped a few inches off one side of her hair.

He added that a few days later, his daughter arrived home with the other side of her hair chopped off, finding out the involvement of a school staff in ‘repairing’ her haircut.

In response, the institution said in a statement that Jurnee became uncomfortable and unsatisfied with her hairstyle after the other student chopped it and sought a school library staff to repair her hair during a classroom visit to the library.

“Regardless of their good intentions, these actions are unacceptable and show a lack of judgement on the part of our two employees,” it stated in the statement

Following a third-party inquiry, the school said in July that the white employee who shaved Jurnee’s hair “would be placed on a last chance agreement at which time any further breaches will likely result in termination,” reported Associated Press.

Both employees have admitted their actions and apologised for their mistakes.

The school also said its inquiry had turned up no evidence of racial  discrimination.

After Hoffmeyer took the matter to Instagram, many internet users expressed their unhappiness with it.

“They had no right! Of course this was a hate crime. Horrible,” one user said

“That’s disgusting of the school. Gorgeous little girl had beautiful hair. They had NO RIGHT to touch it,” said another.

The Mount Pleasant Public Schools Board of Education President, Amy Bond, assured in a statement that the institution will not fail to deliver world-class education to its students with equality

“We will aggressively defend against these baseless allegations in court and will not allow this to distract us from our mission to provide every child a world-class education that prepares them for college and careers,” read the statement.

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