Proposed bill would make it easier for Iowans to get a barber’s license

Published: Mar. 4, 2021 at 5:57 PM CST
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) -The owner of two Cedar Rapids Barbershops is praising a proposed bill in the Iowa Legislature. The bill lets a licensed barber of 3 years hold a registered apprenticeship at their barbershop. A person can take the state exam and get A barber’s license after finishing the apprenticeship.

Chris Krause owns The Men’s Room Hair and Beard Parlor, and Five Seasons Hair and Beard Studio in Cedar Rapids. He has plenty of people reaching out to him for a job at his barbershops.

“A lot of the people that have approached us about working at the shops have been people that would have been great barbers and are talented and have great people skills,” said Krause. “But they don’t have the resources to travel to Cedar Falls to do a 14-month program.”

Life, as simple as it sounds, can make it hard for people to make that kind of commitment. “You’re working, and not being paid,” said Krause. “And you’re making a two-hour commute there and back, that’s something that a lot of people are not willing to do or maybe have the resources to do.”

The bill would let Krause train people at his own shop. Barbers would put in more than 2,100 hours. The same amount that’s offered at schools.

“The tuition price is going to vary from shop to shop,” said Krause. “You know me personally with my barbershops there won’t be a tuition involved. There will be a split with the services where the apprentice is actually earning money rather than paying in. The goal is that there will be a long term chemistry fit for the shop.”

Krause says being a barber is a well-paid skilled trade. He wants more people to get the opportunity to get licensed.

“It’s something that people are good at naturally a lot of times,” said Krause. “Unfortunately, people that would be good at this type of work just aren’t able to because of all the requirements and the current path to licensure.”

Republican Senator Dawn Driscoll from Williamsburg is sponsoring the bill. The bill has passed out of committees and is going to floor debate.

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