Police Force Accepts Hijabs and Turbans as Part of its Uniform

January 13, 2006

Source: Sunday Times


On January 13, 2006 the Sunday Times reported, "West Australian police have added turbans and hijabs to their list of accepted uniform items, in an effort to encourage more Sikh and Muslim people to join the force.

At today's launch of the additions to the traditional blue uniform, Police Commissioner Karl O'Callaghan said the innovation was a milestone in the 152-year history of the WA force. 'The police have always been pretty rigid as far as their uniform regulations go,' the commissioner said. 'We are relaxing those, we are changing those and we are now allowing people to join and wear culturally appropriate clothing. This directive is a step forward for WA police in embracing Western Australia's diverse and multicultural society.'

The new directive allows police officers who have genuine religious or cultural requirements to adapt their uniform to meet these needs.

The items of cultural clothing, including turbans and hijabs, will correspond with the blue of the WA police service and will include the chequered hatband and badge. Beards worn on religious or cultural grounds will also be acceptable."