INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – As FOX59 continues its Black History Month series “Black Hair, Let's Care,” one thing has become apparent. It's a conversation that's still worth having, both in person and on social media. That's where Tanae Howard met First Lieutenant Whennah Andrews, a member of the DC Army National Guard.
Andrews has made national headlines and was even featured in Vogue magazine for a battle she that she had no idea would put her on the front lines.
Andrews was instrumental in leading the fight to allow women in the military to wear braids, twists and dreadlocks in uniform, styles especially worn by black women.
The 2014 ban was under the military's regulations on grooming. Concerns centered around the styles being neat and conservative and the ability for the styles to fit military headgear.
Slowly, other military branches reinstated braids and twists, but the Army still said no to dreadlocks.
Andrews put together a proposal, including a video. The national media caught on and the Congressional Black Caucus got involved. Finally, in January of 2017 the ban on dreadlocks in the United States Army was lifted.
For thousands of women, that was the freedom they fought for.