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Tattoos in the Workplace 






The Support Tattoos and Piercings at Work movement realizes there are hundreds of reasons why discrimination works. Here some thoughts when dealing with tattoo discrimination in the workplace.


You're not the employer's enemy. Employers are the backbone of every country. They provide economic growth and the ability to put food on the table and provide shelter for yourself and your family. Millions of individuals worldwide with tattoos and piercings in the workplace are actually business owners and employers themselves. Unfortunately, employers occasionally are blamed for discrimination of tattoos in the workplace when the actual cause is not the employer. Here's an example.




Current or past complaints about tattooed or pierced staff often spooks management. At the end of the day, business owners spend countless hours building their business. Their business is a way to provide for their family and dreams. Many times their business is their dream and passion. Management sometimes doesn't have skin in the game, no pun intended, and they didn't create their company to make a social statement. Customer complaints or negative feedback regarding tattoos or piercings isn't just a threat to a business, it's a threat to the owner's passions, dreams and hard work.


Some employers or management genuinely hate tattoos in the workplace based on previous experiences. We all have stereotypes, judgments, and choices in life. These are gut instincts compiled from past experiences. The only human beings who don't actually have opinions or make judgments are babies, since they haven't experienced life. Understanding your employer and their mindset is crucial. Put yourself in their shoes. You can never gain hearts by attacking someone. Listen, love and talk. Read the section below entitled, Tattoo Acceptance in the Workplace, on some helpful ways to deal with tattoo discrimination in the workplace.




Currently pierced, tattoos in the workplace aren't protected by federal law. In reality, legal action hurts the tattoos in the workplace cause. It reinforces negative stereotypes of entitlement, laziness and makes employers combative. Scroll below for a list of ways to spread tattoo acceptance in the workplace.




Religious: Occasionally there are some legal grounds to protect against tattoo discrimination in the workplace. Tattoos that are religious are protected to some extent in a courtroom. This is if the tattoo discrimination in the workplace was directed towards the religious beliefs of the individual and not the "tattoo rights." 

Political: Additionally, a few states have laws prohibiting political affiliation discrimination. If you work in one of these states and have political tattoos you may be protected. Also, all government employees have First Amendment rights, and political affiliated tattoos are protected.


The key to a social change is living above reproach and being hard workers. Entitlement doesn't win over opinions or hearts, hard work does. 

Demand respect by your actions, not your words 

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If you have tattoos, piercings, long hair, or multicolored hair, don’t settle! There are 100’s of GOOD companies who hire you based on your character and work ethic. When you're employed at a company that doesn't appreciate you, you'll never appreciate your job. "If you enjoy what you do for a living, you'll never work a day in your life."




Be Empathetic: Read the tattoos in the workplace section on how to stop discrimination above entitled Understanding Your Employer.


Prove Yourself: Studies show employers say the most valuable employee qualities are honesty, drive and follow through ability. Statistically, 65% of employees who were hired found tattoo and piercing dress code policies relaxed after 1 - 2 months. When you have your employer's back, they'll have your back.


Ask: Sometimes employers have dress code policies out of habit. Several of our followers comment that once they've proved their worth at their company, they've successfully asked management to change tattoo acceptance in the workplace dress code policies.


Speak Out: The problem is the only customers who voice their opinions are complainers. According to studies 80% of customers who ask for management have negative feedback. As a customer, whenever you see tattooed or pierced staff always ask for management and express thanks for supporting piercing and tattoo acceptance in the workplace. Just remember, complainers already asked for management. 


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Represent: Remember if you have tattoos and piercings each interaction you make today represents the tattooed and pierced community.

1) Love Others
2) Be Respectful
3) Work Hard
.... you'll change perceptions 1 interaction at a time.

The key to a social change is living above reproach and being hard workers. Entitlement doesn't win over opinions or hearts, hard work does. 
Demand respect by your actions, not your words.

Piercings in the Workplace



The same principles apply to piercings in the workplace. While almost 19% more American's have visible piercings than tattoos they tend to be more commonly discriminated against. However, piercings in the workplace can pose health risk factors at certain machinery and food service jobs that tattoos don't pose. 



Here's a thought when it comes to piercings in the workplace. The definition of professionalism is based on character and attitude, not looks. There are millionaires up to their eyeballs in debt who treat people horribly. There are hard-working middle-class families that are out of debt and love their neighbors. When you die all the money goes back in the monopoly box.
The impact you make lasts forever. Professionalism isn't based on superficial looks, it's based on how you treat others and respect others. Read other unique arguments here.

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