Met Police Relaxes Ban On Recruits With Visible Tattoos

Scotland Yard partially relaxed its ban on recruiting candidates with tattoos on Wednesday as it launched a drive to hire 2,000 more officers in the next year.

In future candidates who have visible tattoos will be considered “on a case-by-case basis” instead of being automatically rejected as in the past.

Met Commissioner Cressida Dick said: “We hope this will show we are a modern service. A huge number of young people carry tattoos and we want to get the best of London in.”

She said even full-sleeve arm tattoos could be permitted “as long as they are not offensive” and may need to be covered up for “certain policing situations”.

She told the Standard: “Many young people are ruling themselves out because of tattoos. We won’t take a tattoo on the face but we are relaxing a little bit.”

Ms Dick told LBC radio that 10 per cent of applicants last year were ruled out because they had tattoos.

The Met also announced it was funding the Certificate in Knowledge of Policing course for new recruits, at a cost of about £1,000 per person, as part of the “Do Something Real” campaign launched today.

The recruitment campaign comes as the Met is battling a surge in crime in London, while officer numbers have fallen below 30,000 for the first time in 15 years.