For many young people, the Army presents a phenomenal opportunity. In fact, more and more men and women alike are considering enlisting for a unique chance to serve their country and ultimately fund their other goals and dreams. Pursuing this career, however, comes with a bevy of demanding physical requirements. Now, the U.S. Army is cracking down on other aspects. Not only do you have to be in impressive shape, but you're also limited in terms of tattoos, piercings and other elements of your appearance.
Tightening the guidelines
Hawaii News Now reported that the Army is considering a new tattoo policy that would likely cause many hopeful recruits to consider tattoo removal options. Of all the military branches, the Army would have the strictest rules regarding tattoos.
"Right now the only policy is, no tattoos above the neckline, anywhere else is eligible for review," Captain Victor Somnuk of the Honolulu Army Recruiting Company told the news source.
Regulation 670-1 is still in discussion, but if it's passed, any potential recruits with ink on their lower arms and lower legs would automatically be ineligible. According to the Army Times, the initial plan for this regulation was to prohibit any tattoos that extend above the neck line, beyond the wrist line or are visible on the hands. Additionally, sleeve tattoos would not be allowed. 670-1 is being led by Sergeant Major of the Army Raymond Chandler and his board of directors. However, these proposed changes have been lying in Army Secretary John McHugh's office for several months and no action has been taken yet.
Police force following suit
Hawaii News Now noted that even police departments across the state are adopting a stricter stance on tattoos. For example, starting July 1, all Honolulu officers will have to conceal their ink with either clothing or makeup. According to the department, this is all in an attempt to convey a more professional image. Steven Lam of Working Class Tattoo in Honolulu told the source that the tightening policies in both the military and police force make sense.
"It's not an archaic thing," he said. "It's a reaction to tattoos being more acceptable in society."
Owen Craig is one recruit who almost saw his dreams crushed due to his ink. According to the Observer-Reporter, Craig had to wait 15 months before he was sworn in – and the lengthy process was only due to a dragon tattoo on his leg. Fortunately, removal can be completed in fewer treatments with the use of a PicoSure laser, even with particularly stubborn ink. If Regulation 670-1 gets passed, young people with ink who aim to make a career out of the Army will definitely have to seek out tattoo removal methods.
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