Tattoo Policy

Tattoo Policy

Overview

You must comply with New York State Police policy which requires all members to present a uniform 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.
  • The uniform includes a short sleeve shirt open at the front of the neck.
  • In addition to visibility, some tattoos or brands may have symbolic meanings that are inconsistent with the values of the New York State Police.

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.

Candidates with obviously visible tattoos on their head, elbow, forearm, wrist, hand, or fingers will be permitted to participate in Trooper Candidate Processing.

All candidates will be screened during processing. A determination will be made as to whether an applicant is in violation of the current NYSP tattoo policy. If a candidate is found to be in violation, the person will have the option of having the tattoo or the visible portion, removed at their own expense.

Appointment to the Academy class will be contingent on the complete removal of the visible tattoo. The removal will be verified at the time the candidate attends Medical Processing which typically occurs 30 days before an Academy class.

The images below provide a guide to the fit of the New York State Police short sleeve uniform shirt. In general, tattoos on the upper arm that are at least two inches from the bone of the elbow typically meet the tattoo policy. A final determination will be made at processing.

Head or Neck Tattoos

Tattoos on the head or neck, including in or around the mouth area, are prohibited.

Head or neck tattoos

 

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.

Chest or back tattoos

Arm Tattoos

An upper arm tattoo must be covered by wearing a properly fitting short sleeve uniform short with no portion of the tattoo showing.

Tattoos on the elbow or lower arm are prohibited. 

Arm Tattoos

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. 

Hand, finger, wrist tattoos