MANILA Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Officer-in-Charge Secretary Eduardo AAo said on Wednesday that he is against the passage of a bill in the House of Representatives seeking to scrap the no-tattoo rule for aspiring policemen.
AAo noted that the Philippine National Police (PNP) as an organization enforcing the laws of the land must mirror an image worthy of the Filipino people and gain further trust and emulation of the youth.
He said that policemen with tattoos do not project a "clean" and dignified image.
"Call it old school, but the police service should not only deliver excellent law enforcement service but should be comprised of men and women who acknowledge that they are role models to the people and the youth," AAo said.
The DILG chief was reacting to a controversial proposal in Congress, saying that, tattoos should not be a basis for the entry of well-meaning individuals in the police organization.
Though having a tattoo does not hinder the exercise of a police officer's duties, he said it cannot be discounted that it creates an impression associated with thugs and law offenders which the PNP cannot afford now that organization is working to gain public trust and cooperation in its anti-crime and anti-illegal drugs efforts.
"We want our police to look dignified, wearing proper uniform, and with no tattoos, AAo said.
He said that the no-tattoo rule also complements the PNP's ongoing Tamang Bihis (proper attire) campaign which mandates policemen to wear and use only the prescribed police uniforms, insignias and other accoutrements from accredited suppliers.
PNP Memorandum Circular No. ?2014-010 states that "the Recruitment Officer shall initially conduct a visual physical inspection for presence of tattoos and noticeable deformities of the applicant".
The PNP Academy lists tattoo and other brotherhood marks as one of the grounds for medical disqualification.
Source: Philippine News Agency