MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Under a new state law, Tennessee’s beauty professionals will now be required to go through special training to help them recognize the signs of abuse and how to respond.

It’s no beauty secret, millions of women across Tennessee often head to the salon to get that special look. Now those visits could take on new importance as the state tries to combat domestic violence.

It’s all part of a new state law that took effect on New Year’s Day.

The courses are free and while they don’t require cosmetologists to report abuse, the law does provide a safe place for victims to go and talk when they need help.

“A lot of times, people come in and they confide in you and they’ll tell you their deepest secrets,” barber Craig Charles said, “We can look for signs and say ‘Hey, you know what? Call this person, Dial this number to help you out, help yourself.’ I think that’s great.”

There are more than 50,000 licensed beauty professionals in Tennessee.

Those who already hold a license have until 2024 to go through the domestic violence training, which is now mandatory for new recruits.

Sadly, half of all crimes in Tennessee are tied to domestic violence.

If you or someone you know needs help, you can call the YWCA’s 24-hour crisis helpline at 1-800-334-4628.