GRANTS PASS, Ore. — Ordinarily, seeing a particularly scruffy, unshaven police officer might be cause for alarm — given that law enforcement agencies tend to have a fairly strict code for grooming standards. Consider this passage from the Portland Police Bureau entry for Appearance Standards:
"Facial hair may not be more than 1/4 inch in length, and must not interfere with the natural seal of the issued gas mask . . . Mustaches and goatees are allowed. Beards are not allowed. Mustaches must be kept neatly trimmed and will not exceed the upper border of the lip or extend more than 1/4 inch horizontally beyond the corners of the mouth."
Yet at least some local law enforcement agencies are making an exception for the month of November in order to help raise cancer awareness and promote prevention. So far the Josephine County Sheriff's Office (JCSO) and Grants Pass Department of Public Safety (GPDPS) have announced their intent to participate in "No-Shave November."
Most people are aware by now of the No-Shave November or Movember concept and the mission to raise awareness. But they may be unfamiliar with the fact that these are specific non-profit organizations who work to raise funding for cancer research and prevention. NewsWatch 12's Mike Duffy will have an in-depth report on those organizations on Thursday night.
"The goal of No-Shave November is to grow awareness by embracing our hair, which many cancer patients lose, and letting it grow wild and free," says the organization's website. "Donate the money you typically spend on shaving and grooming to educate about cancer prevention, save lives, and aid those fighting the battle."
JCSO says that it will be allowing their employees to grow out their facial hair "up to and including beards" as they work to raise money for the fight against cancer. Each employee who participates will be donating $50.
Last year, JCSO says, it raised $1,700 and donated the money to Doernbecher Children's Hospital. This year the proceeds will be "donated locally to an an individual/family or organization supporting the fight against cancer." The agency is looking for suggestions on where the donation should go — you can email your suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meanwhile, GPDPS has their own web page with No-Shave November to tally up donations for the cause. They have a fundraising goal of $5,000.