THE COCHRAN LAW FIRM SPONSORED CONTENT — According to a new study by researchers at the National Institute of Health, Black women are at a higher risk of cancer if they have used chemical hair straighteners attorneys are now filing claims for those women who’ve been affected.

Fun on the Run host Yolonda Williams talked to North Texas attorneys Larry Taylor and Victoria Neave, and their client Andrea Loyds.

Larry, tell me what is this litigation about?

It’s really two parts. It’s the actual science behind why this is such a dangerous chemical. What basically is happening is women with curly hair, who want to straighten their hair and who use relaxers are using these chemicals to break the bonds that make our hair curly. By doing so, it’s messing with their hormones, causing hormonal imbalance, and therefore causing uterine ovarian cancers, as well as fibroids that lead to serious issues like hysterectomy. A large part of that has to do with why these women are straightening their hair.

Larry, why do you think it is now coming to a head?

I think a large part of it is because of the research being done in looking into issues with Black women and ovarian cancer and uterine cancer. The report that you just mentioned, that came out, put a bright light on that. It talks about how the repetitive use of these chemicals, causes these major health issues.

Andrea, you met Larry, and you met Victoria because this is affecting you, correct? How did it all get started?

Well, as a retired hairstylist, that was a service that I offered. I often wondered, ‘Why is it that African American women were being diagnosed with ovarian cancer or fibroids at such a high number?’ That was a service that I offered as a hairstylist as well. For us, it was like we were thinking about jobs. Our hair had to look a certain way. But not only was it just the job thing, but also the fact that what we were seeing on our TV screens or magazines with the flowing hair and things like that. We all wanted that. But not knowing that you know that there were chemicals that were causing this.

Victoria, how did you join Larry, in this fight?

Well, Larry and I go back to our law school days, actually. I can tell you that really, when you think about all of the time that we spend on our hair, all of the money that we spend on our hair, we expect that the manufacturers of these products that are promoting and earning billions of dollars, spending lots of money on marketing, we’re expecting that they’re going to be producing products that are safe. Not products that are causing cancer or miscarriages. So this issue is impacting women all across this country. There’s a website HairLitigationGroup.com, where individuals can go to learn more about it. This also impacts Latina women who are of diverse backgrounds and have curly hair and also purchase some of these products. We want to make sure that if somebody has been harmed if somebody has suffered a miscarriage or any of the potential symptoms, there could be a link to some of these products. We need to hold these companies responsible and accountable. And they need to be producing safe products for
women.