Discrimination Against Tattoos in the Workplace

Despite the fact that nearly 20% of all adults have at least one tattoo, the showing of a tattoo at work can lead to a number of problems. Even though some employers are warming up to the idea that showing some ink can be a good thing, many offices still have dress codes that prohibit the showing of a tattoo. They might be considered ultra-conservative, but body art can be considered as inappropriate as deciding not to wear a tie to work in some environments!

Find a Workplace That Accepts Your Ink

If you are seeking employment in conservative sectors that discourage tattoos, then you’re asking for a bit of trouble. It might not be fair to discriminate because you’ve got some ink or a couple creative piercings, but that’s still the reality of today’s world. Is it more important to make a statement? Or is it more important to get a paycheck? If you’ve got ink that can’t be covered, look for a workplace that accepts your life choices first!

How can you find these accepting environments? For most businesses, it breaks down along the generational lines of the executive team and managers of each individual company. A business that is predominantly managed by people over the age of 50 are more likely to be less accepting of tattoos than companies that have mangers that are predominantly under the age of 30. The general rule of thumb is this: the younger the workplace, the more likely they’ll be accepting of your ink.

Look For a Cutting Edge, Creative Job

When a job’s responsibilities involve creativity or a company is on the cutting edge of their field, the goal is to higher the best recruits more than it is to hire people who can meet a dress code effectively every day. Your talents are the key to your employment here, which means there is little or no concern about your ink as long as you can do your job well every day.

Ultimately the problem is not yours, but the employer’s, because an implementation of a ban on tattoos means they’re losing out on qualified talent because of their conservative approach. Do you really want to work for someone who isn’t going to accept you for who you really are? How happy would you be in a job where your first concern is to make sure your tattoos aren’t noticed?

Is There Anything That Can Be Done About Tattoo Discrimination?

The only legal situation that exists in most communities regarding tattoo discrimination is if you received your tattoos because of established, common religious beliefs. In this specific instance, discrimination would become religious in nature, which is against most national laws. Otherwise a good first step would be to write your local representatives on the local, state/provincial, and national levels to encourage reforms in laws so that those with tattoos can have equal opportunities in all sectors, not just some.

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