Effective for the 2022 Eligibility List, the New York State Police tattoo policy has been revised to allow candidates with visible tattoos to attend candidate processing.
Candidates with visible tattoos SHOULD REPORT to candidate processing weekend. Do not remove yourself from the process without an official determination from the NYSP Member Hiring Unit.
Candidates must comply with New York State Police policy which requires all members to present a neat, clean, and businesslike appearance at all times.
- Tattoos, brands, body piercings, and other body art shall not be visible while a member is in uniform or other business attire, with the exception of a single band tattoo, no more than 3/8 inch in width, on one finger.
- Tattoos on the chest, back, or arms must be covered by wearing a properly fitted uniform shirt or business attire, with no portion of the tattoo showing.
- If any portion of the tattoo, brand, and/or body art is visible when wearing the short-sleeve summer uniform, the Member must wear the long-sleeve uniform shirt, with a tie.
- Tattoos on any portion of the head, neck, or facial area are prohibited and cannot be concealed using cosmetics or any other product.
- Tattoos, brands, and/or body art that are unprofessional or offensive are prohibited. Examples shall include, but are not limited to:
- Depictions of violence or criminal activity.
- Sexually explicit/vulgar art, words, or profane language.
- Symbols likely to incite a strong negative reaction in any group, i.e., swastikas, etc.
- Initials, symbolism, or acronyms that represent criminal or historically oppressive organizations or activities, i.e., AB, KKK, SS, street gang names, numbers, and/or symbols.
Ultra-Violet (UV) Tattoos: Any tattoo visible or apparent only with the use of ultra-violet light must still adhere to the requirements set out above.
Brands: Brands and other body art are subject to the same requirements, limitations, and prohibitions applicable to tattoos.
Body piercing(s) and/or body art: Body piercing(s) and/or body art shall not be visible while a member is in uniform or other business attire.
Head or Neck Tattoos
Tattoos on the head or neck, including in or around the mouth area, are prohibited.
Back or Chest Tattoos
Tattoos on the chest or back must be covered by wearing a properly fitting short-sleeve uniform shirt with no portion of the tattoo showing. If the tattoo cannot be concealed wearing a short-sleeve shirt, a long-sleeve shirt and tie must be worn to cover the tattoo.
An upper arm tattoo must be covered by wearing a properly fitting short-sleeve uniform short with no portion of the tattoo showing.
If the member has a tattoo on the elbow or lower arm that would be visible in a short-sleeve shirt, a long-sleeve shirt and tie must be worn to cover the tattoo.
Hand, Finger, and Wrist Tattoos
Tattoos on the hands, fingers, or wrist are prohibited, with the exception of a single band tattoo, no more than 3/8 inch in width, on one finger.
All candidates will be screened during the processing weekend to determine if they are in compliance with the current NYSP policy. If a candidate is found to be in violation, they have the option of having the entire tattoo or just the visible portion removed at their own expense prior to consideration for appointment in the Academy class.
The tattoo removal will be verified at the time the candidate attends Medical Processing, which typically occurs 30 days before an Academy class commences.
Any questions regarding the tattoo policy should be directed to your local recruiter.