Royal Navy & Royal Marines Tattoo Policy Change - July 2018

Ninja_Stoker

War Hero
Moderator
With immediate effect - tattoos which are not visible in a front view head/shoulders passport photo, when wearing a polo neck shirt (top button undone) are now acceptable as long as they are not obscene (definitions in the small print below).

If you have previously been knocked back from joining the Naval Service for having unacceptable tattoos or are considering tattoo removal, contact your local AFCO now if you still wish to join.








The small print:
Unacceptable tattoos are now defined as being any tattoo which meets one or more of the criteria listed below.
Visible on a front view passport photograph taken whilst the subject is wearing an open necked polo style shirt with one button undone; that is on the face or throat area, on the front of the ear or forward of a line from the bottom of the ear to the collar bone.
Regardless of size or position on the body, a tattoo will be obscene if it refers to or depicts an image of:


a sexual act
extreme pornographic behaviour
violence of any kind
drugs
racism
political views
sexism

Regardless of its size or position on the body, a tattoo will be offensive if, by its nature it has the purpose or effect of violating another person’s dignity or creating an adverse environment for others (for instance because it refers to or depicts an image relating to a protected characteristic of gender, sexual orientation, race, religion, disability or age). A tattoo should only be considered to have such an effect if, having regard to all the circumstances, it can be viewed as offensive by an objective standard.

Any tattoo which does not meet one or more of the criteria above but which, in the opinion of the individual’s Commanding Officer or a recruiting officer, is nevertheless, by virtue of its size, position or nature, unacceptable and detrimental to the Service, for example, a message or inappropriate image on the hand which would be seen when saluting.
 

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Balwearie101

Badgeman
With immediate effect - tattoos which are not visible in a front view head/shoulders passport photo, when wearing a polo neck shirt (top button undone) are now acceptable as long as they are not obscene (definitions in the small print below).

If you have previously been knocked back from joining the Naval Service for having unacceptable tattoos or are considering tattoo removal, contact your local AFCO now if you still wish to join.








The small print:
Unacceptable tattoos are now defined as being any tattoo which meets one or more of the criteria listed below.
Visible on a front view passport photograph taken whilst the subject is wearing an open necked polo style shirt with one button undone; that is on the face or throat area, on the front of the ear or forward of a line from the bottom of the ear to the collar bone.
Regardless of size or position on the body, a tattoo will be obscene if it refers to or depicts an image of:


a sexual act
extreme pornographic behaviour
violence of any kind
drugs
racism
political views
sexism

Regardless of its size or position on the body, a tattoo will be offensive if, by its nature it has the purpose or effect of violating another person’s dignity or creating an adverse environment for others (for instance because it refers to or depicts an image relating to a protected characteristic of gender, sexual orientation, race, religion, disability or age). A tattoo should only be considered to have such an effect if, having regard to all the circumstances, it can be viewed as offensive by an objective standard.

Any tattoo which does not meet one or more of the criteria above but which, in the opinion of the individual’s Commanding Officer or a recruiting officer, is nevertheless, by virtue of its size, position or nature, unacceptable and detrimental to the Service, for example, a message or inappropriate image on the hand which would be seen when saluting.
I always thought that barring potential recruits due to tattoos was completely unfair. You’re genuinely preventing a person from serving their country, which is everybody’s right, because of how they choose to express themselves on their own skin.
Of course if someone rocks up to basic with a massive **** off swastika on their forehead that would be an immediate bar, but a small neck tattoo? Cmon...


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Ninja_Stoker

War Hero
Moderator
I always thought that barring potential recruits due to tattoos was completely unfair. You’re genuinely preventing a person from serving their country, which is everybody’s right, because of how they choose to express themselves on their own skin.
Of course if someone rocks up to basic with a massive **** off swastika on their forehead that would be an immediate bar, but a small neck tattoo? Cmon...


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Must admit, I'm not aware how tattoos impedes getting the job done.

Neck tattoos which aren't visible from the front are now OK. Interestingly we see a lot of female applicants with tattoos on the nape of their neck - that's now OK. I'll post a few examples of what we now accept.
 

Subaru9

Midshipman
And not to be a pain but is there an official link for this anywhere? Can't seem to find a policy change anywhere other than here
 

Balwearie101

Badgeman
Must admit, I'm not aware how tattoos impedes getting the job done.

Neck tattoos which aren't visible from the front are now OK. Interestingly we see a lot of female applicants with tattoos on the nape of their neck - that's now OK. I'll post a few examples of what we now accept.
A friend of mine, who is an absolute machine, applied for the paras, got to pre para selection and absolutely smashed the whole course, coming first in basically everything. A week before his start date he received a call from his AFCO saying that they made a mistake in his medical and his tattoo on his back(a rather large “Yakuza inspired” tattoo) made him a bar to entry. Absolute horse shite if you ask me.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Balwearie101

Badgeman
And not to be a pain but is there an official link for this anywhere? Can't seem to find a policy change anywhere other than here
Have you tried the RN home page and scrolling down to recent news? Usually a good few articles so you’ll have to scroll through I’d imagine.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Trainer

War Hero
Book Reviewer
With immediate effect - tattoos which are not visible in a front view head/shoulders passport photo, when wearing a polo neck shirt (top button undone) are now acceptable as long as they are not obscene (definitions in the small print below).

If you have previously been knocked back from joining the Naval Service for having unacceptable tattoos or are considering tattoo removal, contact your local AFCO now if you still wish to join.



Well done Ninje, beat me to it again.....;)




The small print:
Unacceptable tattoos are now defined as being any tattoo which meets one or more of the criteria listed below.
Visible on a front view passport photograph taken whilst the subject is wearing an open necked polo style shirt with one button undone; that is on the face or throat area, on the front of the ear or forward of a line from the bottom of the ear to the collar bone.
Regardless of size or position on the body, a tattoo will be obscene if it refers to or depicts an image of:


a sexual act
extreme pornographic behaviour
violence of any kind
drugs
racism
political views
sexism

Regardless of its size or position on the body, a tattoo will be offensive if, by its nature it has the purpose or effect of violating another person’s dignity or creating an adverse environment for others (for instance because it refers to or depicts an image relating to a protected characteristic of gender, sexual orientation, race, religion, disability or age). A tattoo should only be considered to have such an effect if, having regard to all the circumstances, it can be viewed as offensive by an objective standard.

Any tattoo which does not meet one or more of the criteria above but which, in the opinion of the individual’s Commanding Officer or a recruiting officer, is nevertheless, by virtue of its size, position or nature, unacceptable and detrimental to the Service, for example, a message or inappropriate image on the hand which would be seen when saluting.
 

Ninja_Stoker

War Hero
Moderator
A friend of mine, who is an absolute machine, applied for the paras, got to pre para selection and absolutely smashed the whole course, coming first in basically everything. A week before his start date he received a call from his AFCO saying that they made a mistake in his medical and his tattoo on his back(a rather large “Yakuza inspired” tattoo) made him a bar to entry. Absolute horse shite if you ask me.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Agreed. I hate naff tatts. ;)

Seriously though, I don't understand why that would've been a bar to entry unless it was visible in parade uniform under the old rules. Methinks your mate was probably talking horse-shit and used that excuse to mask the real reason he didn't join the Paras.
 

Balwearie101

Badgeman
Agreed. I hate naff tatts. ;)

Seriously though, I don't understand why that would've been a bar to entry unless it was visible in parade uniform under the old rules. Methinks your mate was probably talking horse-shit and used that excuse to mask the real reason he didn't join the Paras.
He was wanting to join SFSG, which is 1 para if I’m not mistaken? Massive tattoo that is recognisable, visible or not, can be an automatic bar to SF. What I don’t get, is how they can get any tattoos they want after basic.
Anyway, I’ve not even got any tattoos so I’m not too bothered. Although, I am planning on getting plastered with them once I’m through basic, so hey ho.


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Ninja_Stoker

War Hero
Moderator
He was wanting to join SFSG, which is 1 para if I’m not mistaken? Massive tattoo that is recognisable, visible or not, can be an automatic bar to SF. What I don’t get, is how they can get any tattoos they want after basic.
Anyway, I’ve not even got any tattoos so I’m not too bothered. Although, I am planning on getting plastered with them once I’m through basic, so hey ho.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Tattoos are not a bar to joining UKSF, so I doubt it would affect employment in SFSG.

In any case, my understanding is you do not know which particular Parachute Regiment you are joining when you first join the Army (happy to stand corrected). In any case, if what he is saying were remotely credible, he'd have been offered 2 or 3 Para rather than ditched.

The RN tattoo regulations for those serving do suggest that employment opportunities working in diplomatically sensitive areas can be restricted but the way I read it is if you have tattoos identifying your country of origin, then covert ops in enemy held territory may not be a good idea. That doesn't rule out SFSG per se.

I reckon your mates trolleys maybe involved an an exo-thermic chain-reaction to be frank.

My guess? He failed PRAC - if indeed he ever got that far.
 

Balwearie101

Badgeman
Tattoos are not a bar to joining UKSF, so I doubt it would affect employment in SFSG.

In any case, my understanding is you do not know which particular Parachute Regiment you are joining when you first join the Army (happy to stand corrected). In any case, if what he is saying were remotely credible, he'd have been offered 2 or 3 Para rather than ditched.

The RN tattoo regulations for those serving do suggest that employment opportunities working in diplomatically sensitive areas can be restricted but the way I read it is if you have tattoos identifying your country of origin, then covert ops in enemy held territory may not be a good idea. That doesn't rule out SFSG per se.

I reckon your mates trolleys maybe involved an an exo-thermic chain-reaction to be frank.

My guess? He failed PRAC - if indeed he ever got that far.
Hahahaha **** knows mate, I’d have to ask him more about it


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