The Alberta government has said it has changed its policy of requiring applicants to become orthodontic peace officers to shave cleanly.

The state said in a news release that officers were required to have no facial hair so that the breathing mask fits as snugly as possible around the face.

Orthodontic officers use respiratory protective equipment to prevent exposure to highly toxic substances.

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However, the state says it has purchased new equipment to accommodate facial hair. This allows police officers to work as corrective peace police officers, regardless of religion or medical requirements.

For many Sikh men, the requirement to shave cleanly is incompatible with their beliefs.

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Officers who are not medically or religiously exempt must still be shaved clean.

“I am remedying this situation and providing new personal protective equipment that will allow front-line orthodontic peace officers who are monitoring Sikhs to adhere to their faith and carry out their duties in a safe manner. We commend the Orthodontic Services Department raised, “Alberta’s Minister of Justice and Solicitor General said in a statement on Friday.

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Herman Kandra, Vice President of Alberta, Canada’s World Sikh Organization, praised the decision to abolish the requirements implemented in 2016.

“This gives every individual who wants to be a member of the orthodontic police profession a more equal and equitable opportunity,” he said.

The new policy will take effect immediately.

© 2022 The Canadian Press

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