GENERAL ORDER G-02-23: SUBJECT PERSONAL APPEARANCE AND GROOMING (SWORN)
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To establish standards governing personal appearance and grooming for sworn members while on-duty, when representing the Division in an official capacity, or when engaged in law enforcement secondary employment. Personal appearance and grooming shall reflect a professional and favorable image upon the Division and shall instill confidence in the Division and its members by the public.
I. FACIAL HAIR
A. Beards must be neatly trimmed and above the neckline. The length cannot exceed ¼ inch and must contour to the face. Beads or other decorative items shall not be braided into the hair.
B. Goatees must be neatly trimmed and above the neckline. The hair cannot extend more than 1 inch from the corner of the mouth on each side or more than 1.5 inches below the chin. It cannot exceed ¼ inch in length and must contour to the face. Beads or other decorative items shall not be braided into the hair.
C. If a measurement is required, it must be done in a private location and the member will measure their own hair in several locations in front of their supervisor.
D. Mustaches worn without a beard shall be neat and closely trimmed and shall not extend over the lip line of the upper lip or beyond or below the corner of the mouth. The ends of the mustache shall not be twisted or waxed.
E. Lower lip patches, grown between the lower lip and chin that are not part of a beard or goatee, are not permitted.
F. Sideburns are allowed to the bottom of the ear opening. Sideburns should not be so full as to hide the ears from the front.
G. Facial hair shall be of natural color and present a professional appearance without special design or custom exaggerated trims.
H. Members must ensure facial hair does not interfere with OSHA standards regarding the proper fit and seal of a self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) or gas mask. Members will trim any facial hair in the event they are required to utilize a SCBA or gas mask and cannot create a proper seal with their facial hair.
I. Basic Police Academy Recruits shall be required to remain clean shaven for the duration of the academy and field training.
J. If any officer believes they need a reasonable accommodation due to a medical condition, they will inform their supervisor who will coordinate with HR/Employee Relations to facilitate the process.
II. HAIR STYLES
Hairstyles should not distract from a professional appearance in uniform with emphasis on officer safety.
A. Hair color, if used, must appear natural.
B. When the officer is standing erect, the length and/or arrangement of their hair shall not extend below the bottom of the shirt collar or cover the outer edge of the ear. Hair on the forehead shall not obstruct vision. The unique quality and texture of curled, waved, and straight hair are recognized. Natural hairstyles are permissible if the officer’s vision is not obstructed and the length and/or arrangement is compliant. Braids, cultivated locs (individual sections of hair that are intertwined from the root tip, which creates a uniform ringlet or cordlike appearance requiring maintenance/upkeep and are uniform in appearance), or cornrows, if neat and styled close to the head, are permissible. Beads or other decorative items shall not be braided into the hair. All officers must be able to wear Division issued headgear, including gas mask/air purifying respirator, correctly.
C. Hairpieces for sworn personnel are authorized to cover natural baldness or physical disfigurations. When worn, they shall conform to standard hairstyle criteria.
III. TATTOOS AND BRANDINGS
A. A tattoo is any design, letter, scroll, figure, symbol, or any other mark made under the skin or upon any person with ink or any other substances, resulting in a permanent or temporary discoloration of the skin.
B. A branding is type of scarification, a body modification that permanently transforms the skin by causing a visible scar, often made by burning.
C. Tattoos and brandings on the hands, scalp, face (front of a person’s head from the forehead to chin), and the front of the neck shall be prohibited.
D. Cosmetic tattoos such as eyeliner, eyebrows, and lips are permitted so long as they are natural in appearance.
E. Tattoos and brandings that detract from the mission of law enforcement shall be prohibited. Prohibited tattoos and brandings include, but are not limited to, those which incorporate profanity; promote racism; discrimination; indecency; obscenity; lawlessness; violence; illegal drug use; hatred or intolerance; and depict sexually explicit or anatomically correct nude images.
F. The Chief has the authority to order personnel to cover tattoos deemed to be inconsistent with the mission of law enforcement. Members shall cover such tattoos with Division-issued clothing or by utilizing commercially available cosmetics or fabric covers made for the purpose of covering tattoos. If commercial products are used, they must be of a skin-tone color and be neutral in appearance. This policy shall apply while the member is on-duty (including training or outside events), representing the Division in an official capacity, or when engaged in law enforcement secondary employment; regardless of whether the member is in uniform or otherwise attired.
IV. BODY ORNAMENTATION
A. Members shall not wear any item of ornamentation or jewelry on their hands, ears, head, face, nose, eyebrow, tongue, or any other body part that is visible when clothed, Except as authorized in this policy. Prohibited ornamentation includes, but is not limited to, body-piercing jewelry.
B. Members are permitted to wear the following jewelry:
1. Up to three rings on the ring finger of one hand and one ring on the other hand;
2. One wristwatch;
3. Medical alert bracelet
4. No more than two earrings per ear. Earrings must be ball or stud type earrings having a diameter of no more than ¼ inch; and
5. Necklaces that are not visible when in uniform.
C. This policy shall apply while the member is on-duty (including training or outside events), representing the Division in an official capacity, or when engaged in law enforcement secondary employment, regardless of whether the member is in uniform or otherwise attired.
V. DENTAL ORNAMENTATION
The use of gold, platinum, or any other unnatural-looking veneer or cap on a tooth or teeth for ornamental purposes is prohibited. No tooth, whether natural, capped, or veneered, may be ornamented with any designs, marks, jewels, or initials.
VI. BODY MUTILATION
Intentional mutilation of the hands, ears, head, face, nose, eyebrows, tongue or any other body part that is visible when clothed is prohibited. Examples of prohibited mutilation include, but are not limited to: split or forked tongues, piercing(s) (other than ear piercing), foreign objects inserted under the skin to create a design or pattern or for purely cosmetic reasons unrelated to any reconstructive surgical or prosthetic treatment, and enlarged or stretched holes in ears or earlobes.
VII. CONTACT LENSES
A. Contact lenses shall be of a natural eye color. Lenses which are red, orange, silver, or any other unnatural-looking color which when worn creates an unnatural appearance to the eye, or any lenses with a visible graphic design or marking, are prohibited.
B. This policy shall apply while the member is on-duty (including training or outside events), representing the Division in an official capacity, or when engaged in law enforcement secondary employment, regardless of whether the member is in uniform or otherwise attired.
VIII. SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES
Supervisors are responsible for ensuring compliance with the guidelines of this directive and shall be held accountable for the enforcement of all its requirements. Supervisors shall regularly inspect their personnel to determine compliance.
A. Personnel whose current assignment may require deviation from the standards set forth in this directive may make a written request to the Chief of Police for an exception. Any approval for an exception shall automatically expire upon change of assignment.
B. The original approved request shall be forwarded to the Personnel Unit for inclusion in the requesting member’s file and a copy forwarded to the requesting member.