The NYPD is now a friendlier place for Sikhs and Muslims considering jobs in law enforcement, thanks to a major rule change.
The department previously prohibited turbans and beards — the latter on the grounds that they could interfere with gas masks. But, as the New York Daily News reported, observant Sikh and Muslim cops can now sport beards of up to a half-inch in length (shorter beards are also allowed for medical reasons). And Sikh men, whose faith requires them to cover their hair, will be able to wear navy blue turbans with police insignia.
As an ex-New Yorker, I’m pretty darn happy for this — and frankly, a little surprised it hadn’t already happened. A more diverse NYPD is good for a lot of reasons, but I think one that everyone can appreciate is that it simply makes the city safer.