June 20, 2024

Philippine National Police Chief Gen. Rommel Francisco Marbil said he did not order an accounting of police personnel having visible tattoos.

During his command visit at the National Capital Region Police Office headquarters at Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City, Marbil said he does not want tattooed police personnel to experience discrimination.

“We will just make a memorandum to properly manage the situation but right now, we just suspended the policy because of health issues that we need to fix,” he added.

As the PNP is civilian in character, Marbil said they have sought guidance from the Civil Service Commission regarding the matter.

“We are just asking for CSC for their guidance but as for us, we still maintain, as I have said, we are police officers and we cannot have our hair dyed or we cannot sport long hair and we are governed by our civil service. We just want to implement what is proper. Initially, we prohibited sporting tattoos but some already have it,” he added.

Marbil said he wanted a full review of Memorandum Circular (MC) 2024-023 before it is fully implemented due to medical concerns that may arise from the removal of tattoos, as well as the administrative sanctions to be imposed on those who fail to adhere to the policy.

“We should maintain that kind of dignity. How can we be respected as a police officer with many tattoos on our body?” he said.

The MC requires all personnel with tattoos to provide a written affidavit declaring their tattoos and have the visible ones removed.

The policy does not cover aesthetic tattoos, such as but not limited to eyebrows, eyeliner, or lips.

The PNP said unauthorized tattoos include extremist, ethnically, or religiously discriminatory and offensive, indecent tattoos, racist, sexist, and tattoos associated with prohibited or unauthorized groups. – PNA