Tattoos And Piercings In The Workplace Essays

Tattoos & Piercings in the Workplace Essay

878 WordsJun 30th, 20114 Pages

Tattoos & Piercings in the Workplace
Shelley Hipps
College America

This paper focuses on the subject of whether or not tattoos and piercings should be allowed in the workplace. There are a lot of resources arguing that they should not be allowed, but this research maintains the point that they should be more accepted in the workplace these days. This paper concludes by discussing how tattoos and piercings are much more of an artistic expression rather than a form of rebellion as it was once considered.

Tattoos and piercing have become increasingly more common over the years. Obvious issues within the workplace have surfaced. Some would argue that tattoos and piercings in the workplace are inappropriate,…show more content…

“In some industries, such as software and biotechnology, companies need to attract the most intelligent employees, regardless of what is inked on their skin or dangling from their flesh.” (WONG, 2005) This is a great example because it helps argue my point. A company should be worried about the work that its employee will produce and not worry so much about what is on or in their skin. “The outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas says employers will be forced to become more accepting of body art. "Some employers are already having trouble finding skilled workers -- they are not going to let some body art get in the way of hiring the best-qualified candidate," said John Challenger, chief executive officer of the Chicago-based firm.” (WONG, 2005)
I understand some companies just want to promote a strictly professional image. Then again, isn’t the most qualified applicant the most professional one or is it just the one that looks the best? Here is another good example of this point, "I would never want to limit our work force based on body art. Our priority, like any industry, is to have the best that we can have." (WONG, 2005) Tattoos today are recognized as totally different than what they were pictured as in the past. “Tattooing is recognized by government agencies as both an art form and a profession and tattoo-related art work is the subject of museum, gallery and educational institution art shows across the United States.” [ (Levins,

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Tattoos In The Workplace Essay

Tattoos have been around for quite some time now, and they have always been a symbol of belonging, cultural expression or for religion. These days, individuals choose to tattoo themselves because it is part of their lifestyle or personal image. While continuing to grow in popularity and becoming a lifestyle, people are facing issues with having visible tattoos in the workforce. Although it is a form of free expression, employers have a right to enforce certain rules about tattoos in their company because they have a public image to uphold. How you present yourself to the public is solely important, which is why tattoos should not be allowed to be seen in the workplace, since it may appear offensive or unconservative.
Even though tattoos are becoming part of culture and socially acceptable, the negative and prejudiced attitudes towards those with body art are still present. Not all tattoos are gang related, and one must note that they have historically been a symbol of someone’s culture or religion. Other tattoos may have just a personal meaning to its owner and was not intended to be offensive. People also do not understand that a tattoo may impede them from pursuing a professional career, regardless of their qualifications. Employers realize that the need to recruit workers from different backgrounds are important in such a competitive workforce, so they provide accommodation by having reasonable dress code policies.
The laws generally support employer dress code and appearance policies, while employers try to be flexible by having employees to present themselves in a way that is consistent with the employer's image (Gross). As long as they do not discriminate on race, color, religion, age, nationality or gender, employers are allowed to have their own dress code policies that suit their company image.
Being strict about tattoos in the workplace seems rough, but the matter is as simple as following a company guidelines. People must accept the fact that employees represent the public face of a company, so it is important that they follow the employer’s guidelines to respect their company image. Your tattoos may or may not be an issue to the employer but it all depends on the location and size. With visible body piercings, they can ask you to remove them when you’re at work. Although tattoos cannot be removed like piercings, your employer can request that visible tattoos be covered at work (Whickson). If the tattoo can be hidden, then it shouldn’t be burdensome for the employee to simply cover it up to comply with the guidelines. In a 2001 study done by, a research and employment information services company that profiles U.S. companies, almost 60 percent of employers said they would be less likely to hire someone with visible tattoos or piercings (Dellavega). Consider yourself lucky if your tattoos can be covered, because having a job is better than being rejected due to visible body art. Some may feel that people with tattoos...

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