Unwarranted Police Raids

Barber Last week, the Daily Caller featured an article from the Institute for Justice (IJ), which revealed that police in Florida are raiding barbershops for drugs without search warrants, and arresting barbers for not having a state issued license.

As IJ points out, the police don’t need a search warrant, because barbershops are licensed and regulated through the Florida Department of Business and Processional Regulations, where the need to follow rules supersedes things like civil liberty.

Like Florida, Pennsylvania’s Department of State licenses and regulates barbershops. Last month’s “Disciplinary Actions” reported that the Department collected $6,900 in fines and shut down eight barbershops in the Commonwealth, mostly for operating without a license. Acquiring a license costs almost $1,000 in fees, 1,250 hours of training, and passage of an entrance exam.

Pennsylvania has 29 professional licensing boards and commissions regulating numerous occupations. Unfortunately, this extensive network of state licensure often exists to protect current businesses from new competitors under the guise of protecting consumers. To get the state’s economy back on track, restrictions on many occupations should be removed.