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  • Tattoos.

    I've been beating myself up a lot and over thinking about my tattoos. I have a full sleeve on my left arm (doesn't pass my wrist) and one tattoo on my right arm and a tattoo on the back of my neck (can be covered completely in a collared shirt)

    I'm nervous about getting a job and I just really would like anyone's opinion or input on the challenges I face ahead.

    I'm starting the academy in Sept.

    Also i plan on starting tattoo removal for the neck tattoo asap.

    P.s none of my tattoos are gang related, show discrimination or anything of that nature.

  • #2
    Utilize the search feature; this topic has been done, done again and overdone.

    “Truth is not what you want it to be; it is what it is, and you must bend to its power or live a lie.”

    Miyamoto Musashi

    “Life Is Hard, But It's Harder When You're Stupid”

    George V. Higgins (from The Friends of Eddie Coyle)


    • #3
      Not a police officer but I have tattoos and I've learned a few things during my application process.

      1) Until you have the job keep them covered.

      2) Before you even apply know that agencies policy (written and unwritten) on tattoos. Ask up front.

      3) Not having them won't be a strike against you anywhere. Having them is a potential strike against you almost everywhere.

      4) Remember policies change. Chandler AZ recently changed their tattoo policy to become more restrictive.
      He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High
      shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
      - Psalm 91:1

      On Ignore - A few folks.


      • #4
        Bottom line is

        Some places will hire you with tattoos

        Some places will NOT hire you with tattoos

        End of story
        Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

        My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS


        • #5
          I am personally about 80% covered, you would never know if you saw me in a long sleeve shirt. But I have also been passed over on jobs because of it sometimes they are upfront about it and say hey sorry its a no go because of the tattoos. Other times I have not got a reason but have heard through the grapevine it was because of the tattoos. Not blowing my own horn or anything but I have a pretty solid resume/background with training and operational experience most dream about but it was not easy for me to get a Law Enforcement job and I 100% believe it is because of the tattoos, long story short yes I have a L/E job but I think it would have been a lot easier without the tattoos. If I had it to do over again would I still get them? sure would!! I will say that I saw a local city cop the other day with full sleeves on both arms and a full beard in uniform and it was very unprofessional looking! As long as you can cover with a normal uniform i don’t see a problem with it.


          • #6
            I don't know what you are looking for, but some places will hire you and not require you to cover them, some places will make you cover them, and some places will auto DQ you. It is up to you to find out who does what.


            • #7
              I have a number of tattoos. My agency does not have a written policy but at the same time they are very much frowned on. Noone on the department has sleeves. I am the only one on the job with a visible tattoo. It is on my left wrist but I keep it covered at work.
              If it was up to me I would have a sleeve on my left arm. But. If I do get one I guarantee there would be policy drafted. I am fairly confident I would be required to cover it up.

              I am in the process of getting my sleeve started on my left UPPER arm extending to my chest. The artist knows not to go below my short sleeve line. I measure it by extending my left arm all the way up in the air. From there I measure the end of my sleeve. The work will be just under that point.

              I appreciate a nice tattoo but I don't take offense at all to my employer not liking them.
              Prov 17:17 A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.


              • #8
                Thanks for the replies guys. If I could sell my tattoos back I would.

                I don't believe I have a 0% chance I think that's absurd.... But thanks again for the replies.


                • #9
                  In the last tattoo thread I posted in, I leaned more conservatively about the topic, especially that they not be visible. (Btw, FL, I'm not a cop, just civilian.)

                  That was probably about 5 weeks ago. Last week as I was heading into the Pentagon I had to go through a Pentagon cop that had a full sleeve on his right arm. I had a different reaction to his. I thought it looked sharp. Maybe that's because he was so sharp.

                  I was surprised to see it at the Pentagon for some reason. I would expect them to be very conservative on the issue.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by EmmaPeel View Post
                    I was surprised to see it at the Pentagon for some reason. I would expect them to be very conservative on the issue.
                    Maybe a little surprised at the pentagon, but not really. I know people in my agency(DHS), and in the other big fed agencies (ATF, FBI, DEA) who have full sleeves. Some had them before being hired others got them after. Those include Special Agent and Uniformed Agent positions. Im not sure of the actual wording, but Im pretty sure as long as it can be covered by whatever dress requirements the agency has, its kosher.


                    • #11
                      My department has guys with full sleeves and others with visible tats on hands and neck. Other departments in our area make their guys cover their tats.


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