This and that: A tattoo edition
West Lafayette police are the last agency in the county to let officers show their tattoos on duty. Cities gear up for Clean Sweep, Bike to Work Day and the closure of Fourth/Teal
Thanks to sponsor Stuart & Branigin for support to help make this edition of the Based in Lafayette reporting project possible.
How about a handful of notes this morning …
WLPD LAST IN COUNTY TO ALLOW OFFICERS TO SHOW TATTOOS … APPROVED BY A CITY COMMITTEE
West Lafayette police officers will be allowed to show their tattoos while on duty, in a change of city policy approved Tuesday morning. Police Chief Troy Harris said West Side was the last of the local departments to make that move.
Harris said the change came because a majority of applicants to be police officers have tattoos.
“We have to get on board with that,” Harris told the city’s board of works, which approved the policy update.
The previous policy required police officers to conceal tattoos under shirt sleeves, saying that “maintaining a professional appearance is critically important to fostering public trust and confidence in law enforcement.”
“I think the reason we were so slow to change is that there are still a lot of people in our community that view tattoos in a negative light and view them as unprofessional,” Harris said. “But we are hiring professional officers for what they bring to the job. Whether or not they have tattoos is not a sign of professionalism or their inability to do the job.”
The new policy calls on officers to keep from showing tattoos “until approval for the tattoo is obtained” through a formal request and review by the policy chief and a new West Lafayette Police Department Tattoo Committee. The committee will include three sworn department members and two members of the community appointed by the chief, according to the policy.
The policy still prohibits tattoos above the shirt collar and below the wrist, except in the case of a wedding band tattoo on a ring finger. The policy also bars tattoos “depicting words, pictures or symbols, which can be interpreted to advocate, promote or support intolerance or discrimination against an individual or group based on race, gender, ethnic, religious or sexual orientation” or “depicting words, pictures or symbols, which can be interpreted as grossly indecent, lewd, vulgar, disgusting or gang-related.”
COMING UP …
BIKE TO WORK DAY: Greater Lafayette’s annual Bike to Work Day will be Friday morning, with a pair of short, ceremonial rides coming from two directions and ending at the John T. Myers Pedestrian Bridge. Both rides start at 7:30 a.m. Friday.
Coming from Lafayette: Meet at the East End Grill parking lot at 11th and Main streets. The ride will head west on Main Street to the bridge.
Coming from West Lafayette: Meet at West Lafayette City Hall, 222 N. Chauncey Ave. The ride will go from the city hall parking lot to Columbia Street, across North River Road and then follow Howard Avenue, Brown Street and Tapawingo Drive to the bridge.
The end of the ride will feature coffee, snacks and drawings for gift cards to local bike shops and businesses.
Bike to Work Day is part of National Bike Month in May. For more local events, go to: bikewalkgreaterlafayette.org.
CLEAN SWEEP SATURDAY: Lafayette Clean Sweep is looking for volunteers willing to help Saturday. Lafayette City Clerk Cindy Murray said volunteers will get trash bags, gloves and a T-shirt, along with an assigned location to clean up – “unless they have a spot or a neighborhood area that they see that needs cleaned.”
To participate, call the Lafayette City Clerk’s office at 765-807-1021. Volunteers may pick up supplies Friday morning at the clerk’s office, on the second floor of Lafayette City Hall, 20 N. Sixth St.; or from 9-10:30 a.m. Saturday at Columbian Park at the shelter nearest Tropicanoe Cove.
“Any one is welcome to participate – Scouts, church groups, families, neighborhood groups or anyone that wants to help out,” Murray said. “All are welcome.”
ON JUNE 1 (OR AFTER): FOURTH AND TEAL CLOSURE: Signs went up this week warning that June 1 is the target date the Indiana Department of Transportation set to close the South Fourth/Teal Road/Poland Hill Road intersection to make way as the Teal Road reconstruction project moves down the hill this summer. Work is expected to last 60 days. The $15.6 million state project includes new sewer lines and reconstructing large sections of Teal Road, Old U.S. 231 and Indiana 25, from Old Romney Road to near South 30th Street. The full project is scheduled to be done by September 30, 2024. Look for detour details soon.
Thanks, again, to Stuart & Branigin for sponsoring today’s edition.
THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING BASED IN LAFAYETTE, AN INDEPENDENT, LOCAL REPORTING PROJECT. FREE AND FULL-RIDE SUBSCRIPTION OPTIONS ARE READY FOR YOU HERE.