The Lubbock (TX) Police Department recently changed their grooming policy to allow “well groomed” beards.
The policy states:
“Beards, whether full or goatees, are authorized; however they must be worn with a mustache. Beards shall be kept clean, neatly trimmed, and present a conservative, professional appearance. Facial hair of any kind that presents any sort of faddish appearance is prohibited. No portion of the beard may be exceptionally longer than the rest, and beard hair length will nor exceed 1/4 inch. The neck must remain clean shaven.”
The policy states that patches or clumps of hair are not permitted. Soul patches are also forbidden. Officers are encouraged to grow out their hair during their off time.
Assistant Chief Neal Barron said that the policy is quite popular among his officers.
Some of the bearded LPD officers said they believe the new policy saves them the time and hassle of shaving every morning.
There is a strategic purpose behind the policy, The department is hopeful that the new policy will help their recruiting efforts.
“We have to stay competitive as far as our ability to attract applicants, and when other police departments do things to make themselves more competitive to make their policies less restrictive, in regards to facial hair and things like that, we have to keep up.” Barron added.
He explained that more and more police departments around the country are permitting beards.