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Uniformed HPD officers required to cover up tattoos

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 08:43 a.m. HST, Mar 12, 2014

A new Honolulu Police Department policy is requiring uniformed officers to cover up their tattoos.

Chief Louis Kealoha tells KHON-TV (http://ow.ly/uwad2) about 20 percent of the force's officers have visible tattoos. He says it was a difficult decision that has generated mixed reaction.

The chief says there's a trend among police departments nationwide to require uniformed officers to hide their tattoos.

Kealoha, who himself has tattoos, says the policy is about improving the department's professional image.

Officers will have to use long-sleeved uniforms to cover arm tattoos and makeup for tattoos on their necks or hands.

The policy goes into effect July 1.

Undercover and plain-clothes officers will be exempt.

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Ink and tatoo's are becomming more and more prevalant in todays society and it is taking away from the professionalism of not only our police officers, but to the working force in general. Yes, tatoos can be an ethnic or spiritual way of displaying ones beliefs, but they go against the needed professionalism needed in TODAYS society and I for 1 totally agree. For those thinking of getting a tat displayed for all to see may want to reconsider if one wants to work in good work arena.
on March 12,2014 | 08:59AM
serious wrote:
Similar comments on pierced noses, tongues, cheeks, multiple ears, eyebrows, etc etc. Gee, why can't I get a job???
on March 12,2014 | 09:25AM
false wrote:
Visible tattoos definitely are undesireable on sales personnel catering to Asian tourists and are a big turnoff for them. I personally would not hire anyone with visible tats.
on March 12,2014 | 09:22AM
HAJAA1 wrote:
Sounds right to me. I wouldn't hire anyone with visible tattoos for a position of authority.
on March 12,2014 | 09:34AM
Bdpapa wrote:
I've been on job interview boards, and visible tattoos is a negative. To me, it showed immaturity and poor judgement.
on March 12,2014 | 09:38AM
eoe wrote:
Next can we crack down on the illegal tints? The police in Hawaii should be approachable and visible, not look or act like gangsters with dark tints, aggressive driving and tattoos.
on March 12,2014 | 09:43AM
inverse wrote:
Celebrities like Angelina Jolie, tattoo reality shows like the one with Kat Von D, and many college and NFL football players like the SF quarterback Kaepernick or even the University of Alabama quarterback McCarren with a large tattoo on his chest and other places make it "cool" for young kids want to have similar tattoos. As others pointed out unless you are a major film star like Jolie or play football at the level of Kaepernick or McCarren, those tattoos do not play well in most "regular" places of employment and will hinder their advancement, whether it is fair or not. Even the S A with its Pulse and Tats and tanlines glorifies people with tattoos. Problem is some of the tattoos shown on the Tats and tanlines looks like some of the tattoos on the show Tattoo Nightmares and how people try to get rid of their tattoos by changing it to something else.
on March 12,2014 | 09:51AM
inverse wrote:
Another thing to consider is Hawaii has high levels of people with Hepatitis C and they don't even know it and one way of getting it is by use of needles. The bigger or more tattoos someone has the higher chance they might get Hepatitis C from getting tattoos. No direct proof this is happening and most legitmate tattoo parlors use accepted sterilization procedures or don't even reuse needles, however the virus is so tenacious despite all accepted sterilization practices the virus can still affect someone getting a tattoo at a tattoo place. Just like a hospital, or even cruise ship, no matter how hard they try to prevent spread of viruses or other illnesses, groups of people still get sick when they shouldn't. Again no direct proof but but to get Hep C requires someone to either use needles to penetrate their skin or get really intimate with others and you don't get it from touching door handles and the people with Hep C who do not have a whole lot of intimate partners or IV drug users by process of elimination all that is left for risk of exposure is from getting a tattoo.
on March 12,2014 | 10:15AM
juscasting wrote:
To "INVERSE" many folks in Hawaii have "TB" and don't know it. You don't need to use needles to spread TB! Measles is spreading also, don't need to use needles to spread that either!
on March 12,2014 | 11:49AM
inverse wrote:
This article is about tattoos on HPD officers and I was pointing out ALL ramifications related to the increased popularity of tattoos in Hawaii and elsewhere. Many bugs are around HOWEVER you cannot get Hep C via someone sneezing on you or flying in the same airplane with someone infected cause the Hep C virus is not airborne. Very difficult to control people around you in public that might carriers of diseases that are transmitted in the air, however people have choices when they voluntarily choose to undergo the process of getting tattoos which involves needles penetrating your skin hundreds/thousands of times and exposing your body to pathogens like the Hep C virus. Even if a tattoo shop adheres to all accepted standards of cleanliness that is no guarantee for not getting the virus. There was an story in which someone contracted a disease from infected operating tools even though it was properly sterilized in an autoclave. I think it was a prion not a virus in that case but viruses are incredible survivors and transform in ways humans cannot completely understand.
on March 12,2014 | 12:10PM
Jerry_D wrote:
You said, " Even if a tattoo shop adheres to all accepted standards of cleanliness that is no guarantee for not getting the virus." So likewise, even if a MEDICAL DOCTOR adheres to all accepted standards of cleanliness, there is not guarantee for not getting the virus? Then we better not donate blood or do any kind of medical bloodwork, right? How can one catch a bloodborne disease if the needles are sterile (and never before used) to begin with? Like I said in a previous reply, your logic is absolutely FLAWED and is merely an unsubstantiated/uneducated personal opinion. Please don't insult others' intelligence by passing your prejudices off as "fact." Before you know it, you'll start saying it's a fact that the Jews are inferior to the Aryan race...
on March 12,2014 | 01:28PM
Jerry_D wrote:
No, needles alone do NOT transmit Hepatitis C...nor anything else, for that matter. It is CONTAMINATED needles that can transmit diseases. And the fact of the matter is, ALL legitimate tattoo shops (ie. inspected and passed by the Dept. of Health) use STERILIZED, single-use needles that contain absolutely no Hep contamination. Using your own logic that "needles transmit diseases," we can likewise catch diseases from getting blood drawn at the clinic! The entire logic of your message is flawed and is simply a reflection of your own unwarranted (and uneducated) prejudices.
on March 12,2014 | 01:22PM
2NDC wrote:
Been to at least two tattoo establishments. Both of them very clean and very professional. Never contracted Hep C or any other ailment from a tattoo parlor.
on March 12,2014 | 05:12PM
salsacoquibx wrote:
on March 12,2014 | 10:09AM
Tarakian wrote:
Sorry, I disagree with policy. HPD's uniform commands respect and the officers professionalism is what matters more. Police chief lost opportunity to support front line guys and further boost morale. Times changed. Tattoos more acceptable, not as negative like before. Especially tats that show, patriotic and positive traits. A lot of tats show the person's culture heritage too. Times have changed.
on March 12,2014 | 11:21AM
KB wrote:
that's the reason for having a uniform ...long sleeve shirts ok
on March 12,2014 | 01:30PM
mineeyes wrote:
Unless you're a bill board or on a professional stage to market yourself, It's been observed that individuals with tattoos need the visual posturing to compensate for their insecurity, lack of confidence and recognition among their peers and society. "Tap out" "Mafia" " Warrior" and other" please look at me I'm bad" quips. Look at what they drive!
on March 12,2014 | 02:56PM
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