Author Topic: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged  (Read 214482 times)

0 Members and 4 Guests are viewing this topic.

Offline ballz

    ...

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 107,241
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,116
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #425 on: March 08, 2017, 15:36:23 »
When the rules change I'll follow them and enforce them.  Some people refuse to for personal reasons.  That's wrong.  It's that simple.  Troops like to have their mobile devices out in class or on the firing point or wherever.  Does this mean I'm out of touch by telling them to put it away or maybe, just maybe they are out of touch with what they should be doing?  The organisation has changed the rules before and will do it again, but as a leader its my job to make sure the rules in place are followed.  I don't ignore the guy with a nose piercing who shows up or the guy who shaves his girlfriend's name into his hair.  So when the Navy TDO here shows up to work in Combats I will tell her that she is out of dress, not "it's ok, as long as you are comfortable".  And yes I will tell whoever to get his hands out of his pockets or stop leaning against whatever wall they think they are holding up etc etc.

Ok I'll be blunt here to those of you who don't get it:

You as subordinates of the CDS don't get a vote at the table. Period. If you're told to shave, shave. If you have medical or religious reasons so be it.
There is no "dinosaur" mentality when it comes to using the kit your issued properly and that includes shaving to properly employ  the respirator.

Wow, I see you managed to write an entire paragraph about an argument that isn't actually occurring... No one here is saying troops shouldn't do what they're told, no one here is saying SNCOs and WOs shouldn't enforce the rules that exist, no one here is saying that if troops choose to not follow the rules they should just be let off the hook. No one here is saying that we should be able to make the rules.

We are discussing the rules that DO exist, why, and if they are outdated and need change... welcome to the conversation that is actually occurring. We are allowed to discuss this, we don't need the CDS's permission.

more and more people are asking about this and other things:  Is there a solid, operational reason to do this?  Or is it only, "because I said so" or "because it's been done a million years this way"?  If the latter is the only reason someone gives for anything, as someone way smarter than me said earlier ...

The gas mask argument is a bit of a fallback, IMO. We have members with beards that are able to operate in a CBRN environment. They are "accommodated" for by saying "yes you can have a beard, but only if you shave for operational requirements." This can be done for anyone.

Secondly, we don't even keep our gas mask on our leg for most of our training, so how can anyone try to argue that shaving each morning in a swamp of all places is related to being able to put on a gas mask for CBRN purposes when you don't even have it with you.

I don't think you're quite correct here.  It may depend on the firm, but most of the professions are pretty conservative.  If you want to work in a boutique law firm defending tree huggers for protesting, then you can probably get away with meeting your clients in jeans and a tie-died T-shirt.  However, if you want to succeed in an upscale Bay Street firm, then you probably don't want to show up wearing an off the rack suit you got on special at Moores.  Furthermore, all lawyers have to wear robes and collars in court and yes, that dress standard is enforced.  QCs tend to wear silk robes, because it's expected, not because they have to.  Similar standards also apply to other professions and not because their colleagues are telling them, but because their clients expect it.  I was once referred to a civilian medical specialist and after the first appointment I reported back to the Base Hospital that I would not see them again because I felt they were unprofessional (granted, based more on the condition of their office than their clothing) and, therefore, I doubted their competence.

We wear uniforms in the military in order to avoid shooting the wrong guys by mistake, but the reasons for our tradition of spit and polish has more to do with health.  Leaders in centuries past may not have known why forcing their soldiers to meticulously clean and polish their kit and maintain grooming standards made for healthier, more effective troops, they just knew it did.  Even today, if you have a soldier who can't master keeping his uniform clean and can't seem to shave and get his hair cut, how effective is he at other more important tasks?

I think you would have to go back and look at my posts as a whole to see what I am getting at. I was not saying that lawyers / accountants / other professions don't have standards, in fact I acknowledged that they do on two occasions.

However, they seem capable of being practical, and no, I don't think they lose clients because someone has a beard or because a male has earrings.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2017, 15:39:30 by ballz »
Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.
- Helen Keller

Offline ballz

    ...

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 107,241
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,116
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #426 on: March 08, 2017, 15:37:44 »
My issue isn't with someone wanting to wear a beard, it is the ones that just let people do it without the rules to back them up, just because.  I don't disagree with beards per se, I disagree with just letting people do want they want when it goes against the regulations in place.

I'm sorry, but I really don't understand where this is coming from. I don't see anyone advocating for this.
Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.
- Helen Keller

Offline Loachman

  • Former Army Pilot in Drag
  • Directing Staff
  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *
  • 206,392
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,208
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #427 on: March 08, 2017, 16:17:40 »
We wear uniforms in the military in order to avoid shooting the wrong guys by mistake

And also Not to be Seen - but I cannot link to the Monty Python sketch on Youtube from here.

Leaders in centuries past may not have known why forcing their soldiers to meticulously clean and polish their kit and maintain grooming standards made for healthier, more effective troops, they just knew it did.  Even today, if you have a soldier who can't master keeping his uniform clean and can't seem to shave and get his hair cut, how effective is he at other more important tasks?

"The 'eathen in 'is blindness bows down to wood and stone.
'E don't obey no orders, unless they is 'is own.
'E keeps 'is sidearms awful,
'E leaves 'em all about,
And then up comes the Regiment, and pokes the 'eathen out."

The British Army, in Rudyard Kipling's day, knew, and was almost unbeatable.

Disciplined, and well-trained, armies tend to beat those with less discipline and training.

Appearance is an outward display of discipline and training.

A uniformly-clad-and-equipped (with allowances for crew-served weapons, etcetera) force always looks more imposing than a rabble, numbers being equal, and has a psychological edge as a result. This has been understood for millennia.

Spartans and Romans did not have to worry about outlandish freaky hair colours and most of the other things that I listed, but did make the effort to distinguish themselves from barbarians.

Offline George Wallace

  • Army.ca Fossil
  • *****
  • 433,525
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 31,551
  • Crewman
DISCLAIMER: The opinions and arguments of George Wallace posted on this Site are solely those of George Wallace and not the opinion of Army.ca and are posted for information purposes only.
Unless so stated, they are reflective of my opinion -- and my opinion only, a right that I enjoy along with every other Canadian citizen.

Offline Flavus101

  • Member
  • ****
  • 12,025
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 218
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #429 on: March 08, 2017, 16:35:43 »
I stopped shaving one day and got kicked out of the CF the very next day.

Fastest release process ever...

I think that SSM and Ballz are so up in arms because it appears that there is a hell of a lot more time and energy devoted to ensuring the good ol grooming standards and shiny bits of dress kit than working on items and projects that will allow us to complete our job better.

Perhaps finding a ruck that doesn't have a 20 lbs (slight exaggeration) base weight, boots that work, pistol mags that feed correctly, and many more that I and you all know too well.

In my view there must be certain regulations in place regarding dress. I think that being clean shaven and practicing basic hygiene are decent regulations.

Offline Halifax Tar

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 41,308
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 1,676
  • Ready Aye Ready
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #430 on: March 08, 2017, 16:38:28 »
I've had a beard for all but 2 years of my 18 year career.  I have also participated in the gas hut numerous times and nary had an issue obtaining a seal. 

Pusser, now the RCAF FFs are leaving the fleet, perhaps some common sense can return along with beards. 
Lead me, follow me or get the hell out of my way

Offline Jarnhamar

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 255,511
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 10,047
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #431 on: March 08, 2017, 17:40:08 »
CAF soldiers weren't required to shave while outside the wire in Afghanistan and nothing exploded. The only explosions were when soldiers fighting outside the wire would land in KAF for a couple days (or in some cases hours) to refit and the first stop they made wasn't shaving. It was such a huge deal.

Outside the wire I tried the no shaving thing and didn't like it so I shaved every day. One of the more silly reasons I heard for forcing people to shave was to "not look special forces". This from the same organization that banned soldiers from wearing pistols on camp so they didn't "look like officers" (except for pretty clerks, they were the exception).

It's true CAF members can successfully go through the gas huts when we're employing CS gas however CS gas isn't the biggest threat the gas mask protects us against and the particles are bigger than some of the nastier stuff out there. The QFIT would be a better test. Even then if I was operating in a CBRN environment (beyond some tear gas)  I would question someones sanity for risking having a beard.

IMO if you allow something due to religious reasons it should be an option for everyone. Don't discriminate because of beliefs.
There are no wolves on Fenris

Offline Loachman

  • Former Army Pilot in Drag
  • Directing Staff
  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *
  • 206,392
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,208
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #432 on: March 08, 2017, 18:18:45 »
It's true CAF members can successfully go through the gas huts when we're employing CS gas however CS gas isn't the biggest threat the gas mask protects us against and the particles are bigger than some of the nastier stuff out there. The QFIT would be a better test. Even then if I was operating in a CBRN environment (beyond some tear gas)  I would question someones sanity for risking having a beard.

I learned that many years ago. Even freshly clean-shaven, a significant number of people will become casualties as most masks do not fit as well as people think, and the gas hut is not an adequate indicator of fit.

IMO if you allow something due to religious reasons it should be an option for everyone. Don't discriminate because of beliefs.

And turbans.

Offline Quiet~One

  • Guest
  • *
  • 2,210
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 3
  • Huh.
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #433 on: March 08, 2017, 18:20:54 »
Hi,

Long time lurker.  Mods, I have read the appropriate starter's pages etc.

So, in my mind, there are a few things going on here.  One guys opinion, but have at:

1.  We are a large organization, and we can do many things well, sometimes simultaneously.  That includes defence planning, procurement... you name it.  It also includes maintaining dress regulations for hair.

2.  This is about managing change.  Times change, we change, I change etc.  Social norms and standards change.  Over time, I'd say beards have gained more acceptance in civil society.   It is not inappropriate to say dress regulations can change and be adjusted to fit societal norms.  Moustaches in the British Army in the Great War.  "Burnsides" in the U.S. Union Army etc.  I don't think we can safely say they weren't martial in appearance.  Or ill-disciplined, or not a dangerous foe.

3.  Subset of para 2.  I'd suggest this is larger than beards.  If we can manage small things, it's easier to manage big things.  Also, having seen the political environment we operate in; it behooves us to seize the initiative, and manage change ourselves, lest it be foisted upon us.  We can manage a silly thing like beards easily.  But what happens if we don't and a ridiculous Human Rights Complaint gains traction and beards are suddenly allowed.  Full stop.  Then we react.  Normally in a poor knee-jerk manner.

Managing for operational reasons is easy.  Shave.  Or die, cause casualties, cause your team to undergo needless stress.  CBRN should not be fooled around with.  In garrison right now.  Shave.  But we can manage that part.  Hopefully well. 

It is easy to say it is on the member, they know what they joined, but in all my experience, we are hemorrhaging soldiers, sailors and fliers.  This is an easy thing to change, and it might be a little thing, but maybe its the final straw for some soldier?

Our manning issues are complex, but doesn't that just mean a complex solution?  Beards may very well be a small part of that.

Day to day, dress regulations are an easy thing to work with.  It is black and white and its there.  I don't think any organization in the CAF worth its salt will stop if we don't have to shave in garrison.  If it causes that much consternation, maybe we should reconsider who is there and do we really want them in charge?   Buttons and bows are just that.  Small.  Easy.  But annoying.  Let us reduce the annoyance and get on with the bigger problems we face.

Offline Underway

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • 16,680
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 750
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #434 on: March 08, 2017, 18:22:22 »
It's true CAF members can successfully go through the gas huts when we're employing CS gas however CS gas isn't the biggest threat the gas mask protects us against and the particles are bigger than some of the nastier stuff out there. The QFIT would be a better test. Even then if I was operating in a CBRN environment (beyond some tear gas)  I would question someones sanity for risking having a beard.

As you say CS gas has large particles and can be filtered out by the combination of moisture (sweat) and beard along the neckline of a standard mask.  If you use a different type of irritant with smaller particles you can really have a good time watching the bearded folks who swear they can get a seal suffer. 

CBRN equipment and masks exist that work with beards as well, so really if you wanted to allow beards the CBRN thing is a non-issue.

As a matter of fact we have a guy closely related to our military who knows a few things about this exact issue of beards and CBRN.

Offline Humphrey Bogart

  • Directing Staff
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 101,834
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,819
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #435 on: March 08, 2017, 18:26:20 »
CAF soldiers weren't required to shave while outside the wire in Afghanistan and nothing exploded. The only explosions were when soldiers fighting outside the wire would land in KAF for a couple days (or in some cases hours) to refit and the first stop they made wasn't shaving. It was such a huge deal.

Outside the wire I tried the no shaving thing and didn't like it so I shaved every day. One of the more silly reasons I heard for forcing people to shave was to "not look special forces". This from the same organization that banned soldiers from wearing pistols on camp so they didn't "look like officers" (except for pretty clerks, they were the exception).

It's true CAF members can successfully go through the gas huts when we're employing CS gas however CS gas isn't the biggest threat the gas mask protects us against and the particles are bigger than some of the nastier stuff out there. The QFIT would be a better test. Even then if I was operating in a CBRN environment (beyond some tear gas)  I would question someones sanity for risking having a beard.

IMO if you allow something due to religious reasons it should be an option for everyone. Don't discriminate because of beliefs.

This is what MOPP states are for in orders.  If there's a CBRN threat and there's a requirement to carry MOPP gear, by all means shave.  That's a command decision, driven by intelligence.

Offline Loachman

  • Former Army Pilot in Drag
  • Directing Staff
  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *
  • 206,392
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,208
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #436 on: March 08, 2017, 19:40:03 »
As a matter of fact we have a guy closely related to our military who knows a few things about this exact issue of beards and CBRN.

Thanks. While having read articles in the press, I'd not previously seen any detailed information. One wonders, though, if a prototype has actually been produced, and, if so, how it has performed.

I'd prefer to have a good facial seal as my primary defence, but that is easy to say as I do not share Mr Sajjan's faith.

Offline Old EO Tech

  • Full Member
  • *****
  • 9,235
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 366
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #437 on: March 08, 2017, 20:41:37 »
This is what MOPP states are for in orders.  If there's a CBRN threat and there's a requirement to carry MOPP gear, by all means shave.  That's a command decision, driven by intelligence.

I agree totally, and IMHO the CBRN reasoning is a red herring...the lack of beards in the Army is nothing more than adherence to an archaic idea that we can only tell if our soldiers are washing if we make them shave....which is a low level leadership issue and nothing more.  Not to mention that its a 1% issue with the few soldiers that need to be prodded to stay clean, and we should not be punishing the majority to solve a minority problem.

My 2 cents

Offline QV

  • Full Member
  • *****
  • 6,135
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 272
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #438 on: March 08, 2017, 20:54:46 »
The current dress regs and grooming standards are archaic and embarrassing.  Our uniforms look like sloppy tents.  Boots?  These are easy fixes to improve morale.  When people look good they feel good and they perform better. 

All of that can be done while easily maintaining discipline and op effectiveness.  In fact, with increased pride comes increased discipline and performance. 

And these are relatively cheap fixes to improve the overall state of things in the CAF.  But, people in the positions that matter get lost in the weeds... it's not just about a damn beard. 

Offline Underway

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • 16,680
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 750
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #439 on: March 08, 2017, 20:58:07 »
Thanks. While having read articles in the press, I'd not previously seen any detailed information. One wonders, though, if a prototype has actually been produced, and, if so, how it has performed.

I'd prefer to have a good facial seal as my primary defence, but that is easy to say as I do not share Mr Sajjan's faith.

No idea, though I'm positive not the only product out there.  I've seen full hoods and bag type devices as well.  DRDC has (had?) a world renown reputation in CBRN research and defense and probably have looked at a number of options.  It's one of those random specialties that we have picked up over the years (surely Mr. Minister you aren't going to cut funding for defense against chemical weapons, what would the UN think?).

Offline Journeyman

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 510,290
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 12,448
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #440 on: March 09, 2017, 11:12:41 »
... we can do many things well, sometimes simultaneously.  That includes defence planning, procurement...
  :orly:

"You only get one chance to make a first impression."  ;)

 
You're not some community college kid from Manitoba trying to find online dates er, expert  too, are you? 
Only this site's Politics threads could make the people commenting on CBC news stories seem intelligent.  :not-again:

Offline mariomike

  • Directing Staff
  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *
  • 474,850
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 8,421
    • The job.
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #441 on: March 09, 2017, 12:18:35 »
... there are plenty of professions that don't have unions that also have a grooming standard more relaxed then ours.

Some non-union employers may have higher standards than others. Funeral Directors, for example.

Professional competence is an absolute and appropriate expectation.
But, for certain professions, the military for example, it is not the only expectation.
I believe this is explained to applicant's before they join.

See also,

All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged 
https://army.ca/forums/index.php?topic=29581.350
15 pages.






« Last Edit: March 09, 2017, 13:56:35 by mariomike »

Offline Baden Guy

    Full Member.

  • Question everything. Learn something. Answer nothing.
  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 43,892
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 1,738
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #442 on: March 09, 2017, 12:34:20 »
Hi,

Long time lurker.  Mods, I have read the appropriate starter's pages etc.

So, in my mind, there are a few things going on here.  One guys opinion, but have at:

 
It is easy to say it is on the member, they know what they joined, but in all my experience, we are hemorrhaging soldiers, sailors and fliers airman.  This is an easy thing to change, and it might be a little thing, but maybe its the final straw for some soldier? 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airman
An airman is a member of the air component of a nation's armed service.

Just my pet peeve. Good post.

Cheers

Offline Spectrum

  • I'm from the government; I'm here to help you
  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 50,585
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 1,282
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #443 on: March 09, 2017, 14:41:29 »
Beards unprofessional? What is professional then? Being 300lbs? Being so weak and tiny that you can't hold your rifle properly? NCOs and Officers that look so old and worn out, you'd think they should have been CRA a decade ago? How about fixing these issues? Pathetic.


Offline ballz

    ...

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 107,241
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,116
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #444 on: March 09, 2017, 16:50:46 »
Some non-union employers may have higher standards than others. Funeral Directors, for example.

Professional competence is an absolute and appropriate expectation.
But, for certain professions, the military for example, it is not the only expectation.
I believe this is explained to applicant's before they join.

See also,

All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged 
https://army.ca/forums/index.php?topic=29581.350
15 pages.

I think you are trying to have an argument with me about whether or not the military needs to have grooming standards, which is not an argument that I was ever having.

There is nothing unprofessional about having a beard. Just because a bunch of people that grew up in an era when being "clean shaven" was the trendy thing say that a beard is unprofessional doesn't make it so.

Those same people also say that a mustache waxed and curled in the most God awful way is a professional look. They are wrong. By today's fashion trends, those people actually look unprofessional.

And that's all this comes down to, fashion trends. Which leads me back to my original point... we are absolute joke for spending so much time worrying about fashion trends and comparatively almost no time worrying about some pretty important stuff.
Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.
- Helen Keller

Online kratz

    Summer. Finally!

  • Float, Move, Fight
  • Directing Staff
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 240,433
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,016
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #445 on: March 09, 2017, 17:08:21 »
If the CAF will begin to accept current fashion trends...next up man buns, and
we you will all be issued crocs for the parade square.   :rofl:
Quote from: Pipe *General Call*
"Tanning Stations on the flight deck"


Remember, this site is unofficial and privately owned. The site benefits from the presence of current members willing to answer questions.

Offline dapaterson

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Myth
  • *
  • 411,930
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 15,685
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #446 on: March 09, 2017, 17:10:52 »
Man buns are the sole reason I can use to justify the death penalty.
This posting made in accordance with the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, section 2(b):
Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms: freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication
http://laws.justice.gc.ca/en/charter/1.html

Offline ballz

    ...

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 107,241
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,116
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #447 on: March 09, 2017, 17:16:38 »
If the CAF will begin to accept current fashion trends...next up man buns, and
we you will all be issued crocs for the parade square.   :rofl:

All jokes aside, I never thought about man buns when I was talking about how the CAF is going to get pwned by someone who wants to make a public spectacle regarding the gender stereotypes that are strongly strongly reinforced by the CAF (all the while making people do "gender based analysis" courses and having an Op HONOUR crusade)...

but that is something to be weary of!
Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.
- Helen Keller

Offline Jarnhamar

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 255,511
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 10,047
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #448 on: March 09, 2017, 17:19:19 »
So if I,  as a physical male, decide to self identify as a female can I grow a beard since the dress policy doesn't discuss "women" growing beards?
 ???
There are no wolves on Fenris

Offline Scott

    - apparently an antagonist.

  • Likes fire and loud noises.
  • Chief of Staff
  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *
  • 192,000
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 7,698
  • El Scorcho Diablo
Re: All things beard-y (regs, memos, Army/Navy) - merged
« Reply #449 on: March 09, 2017, 17:32:37 »
If you can pass the test and get a seal, then I see no reason to not allow someone to wear a beard.  The trouble is that now, they won't even let you take the test unless you are clean shaven.  Oddly, this does not extend to CBRN training...

So, again, I'll explain why you're wrong*

1) there is a possibility that a leak created on the face to face piece seal could create a venturi effect and actually draw toxins in to the face piece. This would be a sustained leak, like one that could in theory be caused by an air gap created by your beard. Your beard would make movement of the face piece during periods of exertion much easier - and trust me, face pieces move on everyone under periods of exertion.
2) beard hair wrecks the sealing surface of the face piece. This is even more prevalent since most SCBA started getting CBRN designation and had to use different materials. Stubble and beard hair is like a wire brush. I have seen this.

Just because you got a successful fit test with your beard is irrelevant. It should not have been done. Besides which, I would suspect that you probably influenced the test by over tightening the face piece to reflect a good result with your beard. I can pass the test with any size mask if I reef on the straps, I can pass just by holding the mask to my face.

*all as a general rule of thumb - another reason why a blanket policy is a good idea. And all given in a bit more detail than the actual directives would.

Far as what the military does, I don't care - just to be clear. But when you could have to wear some form of respiratory equipment as a part of your job, well, you come in to my wheelhouse as a SME.

Jarnhammer, give 'er, grow the beard once you identify as female, just don't wear SCBA ;)
Be nice for no reason.