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9.010 - Employee Dress Standards

Effective Date: 10/31/2006


Department employees shall wear clothing and accessories that are appropriate for their work setting.
Commanders, supervisors and managers will monitor their subordinate’s compliance with this policy. Compliance
with this policy may be evaluated during inspections.

Employees should ensure that clothing does not create a distraction or cause a safety hazard.

I. Business Attire

A. Employees who interact with the public in any capacity, as a Department representative will be attired as

1. Department approved Uniform of the Day for sworn employees working a uniformed assignment.

2. For plain-clothes officers and civilian employees, the Commander of a Precinct/Section, or a civilian
Director/Manager (Section Commander equivalent), will determine the dress code for their command.
This is dependent on the operations of the specific unit and the notification of the appropriate Bureau
Commander. The commander/director/manager may allow variances based on weather conditions.
The Command Staff may establish a specific dress code for a specific work group as necessary.

II. Personal Appearance Regulations

A. Male Hair Standards

1. The bulk or length of the hair will not interfere with the normal wearing of the standard police uniform
cap or helmet.

2. The maximum extension of the hair outward from the top of the head will not exceed two inches (2”),
tapering to a maximum extension above the ear of one and one-half inches (1-1/2”), and no more than
one-half (1/2”) from the side of the face at the base of the sideburn.

3. Sides and back of the hair may be either tapered or blocked. In no event will the hair cover more than
one-half inch (1/2”) of the ear, nor extend over the uniform shirt collar, when the officer assumes the
military position of attention.

4. Sideburns shall extend no further than one-half (1/2”) below the ear, and will be no more than one and
one-half inches (1-1/2”) in width, and will be cut horizontally.

5. The face will be clean shaven, except that mustaches will be permitted. If a mustache is worn, it shall be
kept neatly trimmed and tidy. Mustaches may extend laterally not more than one-half inch (1/2”) from
the corner of the mouth, nor more than one-quarter inch (1/4”) below the corner of the mouth, nor
more than one-quarter inch (1/4”) down over the upper lip.

B. Female Hair Standards

1. For uniformed female officers, hairstyles shall be worn so that no part of the hair extends over the
uniform shirt collar. The bulk or length of the hair must not interfere with the wearing of the uniform
hat or helmet.

C. Assignments Requiring Non-regulation Hair Standards

1. Written authorization for individuals working assignments that necessitate non-standard hairstyles shall
be obtained from their respective Bureau Commander.

2. Those officers obtaining this special permission shall not be permitted to be employed off-duty where
the wearing of the police uniform is required.

D. Jewelry

1. When in uniform, sworn and civilian employees shall limit the visible jewelry they wear to a wristwatch,
medical bracelet worn on the wrist, and up to two rings worn on the fingers. Male officers shall not
wear any type of earrings while on duty.

2. Uniformed female employees may wear no more than one earring on each ear. Earrings shall be post or
clip-on types which are no larger than one-quarter inch (1/4”) in diameter.

3. All uniformed employees are prohibited from wearing any jewelry (other than earrings mentioned
above), accessory or other decorative hardware, anywhere on their face or tongue while on duty or at
any formal Department function.

E. Assignments requiring exemption from jewelry regulations

1. Written authorization for individuals working assignments that necessitate an exemption from jewelry
regulations shall be obtained from their respective Bureau Commander.

a. An exemption from jewelry regulations will not extend to any employee’s appearance in uniform,
whether on or off duty, or at any formal Department function.


Adrian Diaz, Chief of Police
Address: 610 5th Avenue, Seattle, WA, 98104-1900
Mailing Address: PO Box 34986, Seattle, WA, 98124-4986
Phone: (206) 625-5011
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The Seattle Police Department (SPD) prevents crime, enforces laws, and supports quality public safety by delivering respectful, professional, and dependable police services. SPD operates within a framework that divides the city into five geographical areas called "precincts".

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