Haircuts in barbershops and hairdressing shops; ministry ruling
The Barbers' Association had made a request at Ministry of Health and Welfare to give a ruling on the legality (!) of the hairdressers' use of a machine in cutting hair. As a consequence, the ministry has sent a ruling to the respective associations that the both professions should operate within their confines, which according to the ministry's interpretation of the law would mean no use of machinery by hairdressers in doing haircuts. "In the hairdresser practical exam, the use of hair clipping machine (ibalgi) is not included. Therefore hairdressers should use only scissors when cutting hair and machine only when finishing the cut, according to the confines of their licence." The ministry tells that there will be a transitional period, but after that they'll enforce (tansok) the matter.
The Barbers' Association representative compares the distinction of licences and permitted work to different kinds of driving licences, and adds further that it's unfair that barbers are not allowed to make perms but nothing happens when hairdressers give haircuts. Hairdresser Association responds, that the use of a clipping machine is within the range of their profession, that it's up the the hairdressers which device they use, and that hairclipper is used all over the world by both barbers and hairdressers.
Elsewhere a representative from the barbers' association says that barbers have lost ground to hairdressers due to "some decayed establishments and out-of-date facilities", but with this ruling and special law on prostitution, those decayed establishments are actively being transformed into exemplary barbershops. Seems he doesn't say anything about giving some facelift to the ordinary barbershops so that younger Korean men might think of having haircuts there instead of hairdressing shops.
Sometimes last year the barbeshop association tried to lobby the ministry for a legislation to prohibit the use of hairdressing shops by men, but to no use. Seems that they've tried to draw this card, knowing that when shaken off, there's no one without any dust (털면 먼지 안 나는 놈이 없다). But on the other hand, who'd think that the ministry will start actively enforce this ruling and control it? And if it did, who'd think they'd be successful?
Anyway, as haircuts make often a major part of hairdressers' work and income (in the cases I know well), having this really enforced would be a big setback.
In the 1980s there were 50 000 barber shops and 15 000 hairdressing shops; at the moment the number of the former is 30 000 and the latter 80 000, tells the article.
Categories at del.icio.us/hunjang: businesskeepers ∙ sefl-employment ∙ women-men