A. POLICY

(1) The Connecticut State Police recognizes the personal appearance of its sworn uniform personnel, when in the public eye, has a direct impact on public confidence and thereby on the ability of individual personnel to perform their official duties. It is the policy of the Connecticut State Police that sworn uniform members maintain a professional appearance that will encourage public confidence in the members of this Department.  As such, the following policy will apply to sworn members of the Connecticut State Police.

 

B.  DEFINITIONS

(1) Body Modification — Means, but is not limited to: tongue splitting or bifurcation, the complete or trans-dermal implantation of any object(s) (other than hair replacement), abnormal shaping of the ears, eyes, nose, abnormal filing of teeth, branding or scarification.

(a) The above definition includes facial piercings to include, but not limited to tongue piercings, lip piercings, nose piercings and brow piercings.

(b) Body modification shall not include those procedures medically necessitated by deformity or injury, or generally accepted cosmetic changes/ augmentations performed by a licensed medical professional.  

 

C.  BODY MODIFICATIONS AND TATTOOS

(1) Body modification to any area of the body that is visible while on-duty in any authorized uniform or attire is prohibited.

(2) The use of gold, platinum or other dental veneers or caps for the purpose of  ornamentation while on-duty is prohibited. Teeth, whether natural, capped, or veneer shall not be ornamented with designs, jewels, initials, etc.

(3) Body piercing jewelry not concealed by any authorized uniform or approved attire while on-duty is prohibited with the exception of earrings worn in compliance with A&O manual § 14.01.01. 

(a) The wearing of any facial jewelry to include, but not limited to tongue piercings, lip piercings, nose piercings, brow piercings by any sworn member of the department while on-duty is prohibited.

 

(4) No sworn member of the department shall have any tattoo, scarification or brand that is prejudicial to good order, discipline, and morale of the Connecticut State Police, or is of a nature to bring discredit upon the Connecticut State Police, or is considered extremist. 

(a) Extremist tattoos, scarifications or brands are those affiliated with, depicting, or symbolizing extremist philosophies, organizations, or activities.  Extremist philosophies, organizations, and activities are those which advocate racial, gender or ethnic hatred or intolerance; advocate, create, or engage in illegal discrimination based on race, color, gender, ethnicity, religion, or national origin; or advocate violence or other unlawful means of depriving individual rights under the U.S. Constitution, Federal, or State law. For purposes of this policy, extremist shall also refer to indecent, sexist and racist.

       1. Indecent tattoos, scarifications or brands are those that are grossly offensive to modesty, decency, or propriety; shock the moral sense because of their vulgar, filthy, or disgusting nature or tendency to incite lustful thought; or tend reasonably to corrupt morals or incite libidinous thoughts.

       2. Sexist tattoos, scarifications or brands are those that advocate a philosophy that degrades or demeans a person based on gender, but that may not meet the same definition of “indecent.”

       3. Racist tattoos, scarifications or brands are those that advocate a philosophy that degrades or demeans a person based on race, ethnicity, or national origin.

(5) No sworn member shall have any tattoo, scarification or brand that is visible while on-duty in the Class “B” summer uniform.    

(a) Arms

Tattoos, scarifications and brands on the arms are authorized.  Members must cover such markings while on duty. 

(b) Hands

A single tattoo on one hand only, no larger than one inch by one inch, is authorized on the hand between the wrist and the first knuckle (closest to the wrist).  Members must cover such tattoo while on duty.  Tattoos on the palm of the hand are not authorized.

(c) Fingers

A single tattoo in the form of a commitment-style ring/band is also authorized on the wearer’s finger.  The width of such tattoo shall not exceed one-half inch (½“).  One such tattoo is permissible on each hand.  Such commitment-style tattoo is not required to be covered-up while on duty.

(d) Neck

One tattoo is authorized on the neck and shall not exceed one inch by one inch.  Tattoos meeting these requirements are acceptable only on the portion of the neck that is behind the front of each ear. Members must cover such tattoo while on-duty.  No tattoos are permitted on the head, face (to include the ear), throat and scalp.

          [a] The collar of the class “B” summer uniform shirt shall serve as the reference point for the                              back and sides of the neck.  In the case of a tattoo near the collarbone, the responsible authority                      shall make a final evaluation to ensure that any tattoo that is visible above the collar is within the                      one inch by one inch allowance.

(e) Under no circumstances shall any incumbent sworn member, after March 1, 2019, be allowed to have any additional tattoo, scarification or brand on his or her head, face (to include the ear), throat and scalp.

(f) Incumbent sworn personnel shall not be required to remove or cover existing tattoos, branding, or body art that existed prior to March 1, 2019, so long as such tattoos, brandings, or body art were otherwise compliant with department policy at the time the tattoo, branding, or body art was obtained, and was properly documented and made part of the employee’s Official Personnel File, if so required.

(g) Any such tattoo or other marking for which an exception or allowance or authorization is made is still subject to the provisions of subsection C(4) above.

(6) Cover-up requirements

All cover-up methods described below shall be furnished at the member’s sole expense.

(a) For authorized tattoos on the hands or neck, and tattoos of a small size and proportion (generally less than or equal to three (3) square inches in area) on the arms, acceptable methods of cover-up or concealment include a concealer or bandage of a color that most reasonably resembles the member’s skin tone.  Such method shall be proportional in size to the area which they are intended to cover, be effective at concealing the tattoo from view, and present a professional appearance.

(b) For authorized scarifications or brands on the arms, as well as those tattoos on the arms of a sizable proportion (generally greater than three (3) square inches in area), the acceptable method of cover-up shall be the use of a sleeve covering (free of any designs or logos) of a color that most reasonably resembles the member’s skin tone.  The sworn member shall ensure such covering remains clean, in good working condition, and professionally presentable to the public while worn.  Said covering shall be subject to inspection by a supervisor to ensure compliance and satisfactory appearance.

(c) If the sworn member is in attire that would otherwise conceal the tattoo, scarification or brand from public view (such as the class “B” Winter uniform in the case of a tattoo on the forearm), the member need only ensure that any portion of such marking that may be viewable by the public is covered by the means described in this subsection.

(7) Ultra-violet (UV) Tattoos

Any tattoo visible or apparent only with the use of ultra-violet light must still adhere to the requirements set forth in this policy, and are not considered to allow any additional tattoos than would otherwise be permitted, allowed, or excepted under any other provisions of this policy.

(8) Applicants wishing for sworn appointment to the department shall be screened during applicant processing at which time a determination shall be made as to whether an applicant is in violation of the policy. Those applicants who have tattoos on their neck or hands will undergo additional screening regarding the suitability of such markings, and a determination will be made on a case by case basis by the Commanding Officer of the State Police, or his or her designee, as to the suitability of such markings.  If a determination is made that such markings are suitable, the applicant may be deemed to be compliant with the policy, but required to cover-up or conceal the markings while on duty consistent with the provisions of subsection C(6) above.

(9) If an applicant is found to be in violation, then the applicant may, at his or her sole discretion, have the tattoo, branding, or body art, or visible portion thereof, removed at his or her own expense.  If an applicant expresses a willingness to have this done, then his or her application will be placed on hold until the removal process is completed. 

(a) Removal of such markings will not per se absolve the applicant of being deemed as having such affiliation or adherence to said philosophies, organizations or activities that may be apparent in any phase of the selection process.

Connecticut State Police Headquarters

1111 Country Club Rd

Middletown, CT 06457

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