Skip to Main Content View Text-Only

The City of Portland, Oregon

Police Bureau

Sworn to protect. Dedicated to serve.

Phone: 503-823-0000

Non-Emergency: 503-823-3333

1111 S.W. 2nd Avenue, Portland, OR 97204

More Contact Info

1110.00 Appearance Standards

*This directive is currently under review*



  • DIR 210.90  Recognition and Awards
  • DIR 317.40  Use of Bureau Equipment
  • DIR 1120.05  Clothing Allowance for Plainclothes Assignments
  • Uniform and Clothing Guide (Uniform Committee – Intranet)


POLICY (1110.00)

Members will wear the appropriate clothing or uniform, be properly equipped, well groomed and exhibit a professional appearance while performing their official duties. Professional appearance projects the image of an alert, responsive agency that takes pride in its work. Clothing and grooming will be appropriate for a business environment. Clothing, uniforms and equipment will be selected and authorized taking into consideration safety, versatility, durability, compatibility, appearance, and tradition. Only authorized uniforms and equipment will be worn.

PROCEDURE (1110.00)

Directive Specific Definitions

Body art: Procedures used to alter the body’s appearance including, but not limited to, branding, scarification and tattoos.

Branding: The act of burning the skin for the purpose of creating a design, form, figure or art.

Piercing: The act of creating a hole in any part of the body for the purpose of inserting an object, jewelry or ornamentation.

Scarification: The act of cutting the skin for the purpose of creating a design, form, figure or art.

Tattoo: The act of marking the skin with indelible designs, forms, figures, art, etc. by puncturing the skin and inserting pigment.

General Guidelines – Wearing of the Uniform (1110.00)

All members will wear and use only the uniforms, clothing and equipment issued by the Bureau and/or approved by the Chief of Police as described in this directive so as to support the policy described above. The uniform will be clean, neatly pressed, of proper fit and in good repair.

This directive addresses uniforms used Bureau wide by members. All members will refer to the Portland Police Bureau Uniform and Clothing guide, updated by the Uniform Committee, for specific descriptions of uniforms, equipment and instructions. Clothing, uniform, and equipment requirements for some specialty units and divisions are not addressed in this Directive.

Members will wear the prescribed uniform or civilian clothing as directed by their RU manager in division or unit SOP.

During official or special functions including, but not limited to parades, graduations, funerals, award ceremonies, formal balls and other events, the appropriate RU manager, Branch chief or Chief of Police will determine the specific uniform of the day.

Members in a uniform assignment through the rank of lieutenant will wear the full uniform unless otherwise authorized by their supervisor. Members above the rank of lieutenant in a uniform assignment are encouraged to wear the uniform.

Authorized Off-Duty Use (1110.00)

Off duty members will not wear a Bureau uniform, complete or in part, without prior consent of their RU manager. If authorized, the entire uniform of the day will be worn. However, the uniform may be worn to and from work if the route is direct and the member will not be involved in conducting personal business. If worn to and from work, it is permissible to wear a civilian jacket or raincoat in lieu of the uniform coat.

Authorized Uniform/Equipment Repair, Replacement and Return (1110.00)

Any unserviceable uniforms or equipment will be replaced. Only RU managers or their designee may authorize replacement of uniforms or equipment. The item to be replaced must be inspected by the person so designated by the RU manager in order to receive a purchase authorization. A purchase authorization (PPB Uniform Order form) is required from members for new uniform and equipment items. The purchase authorization must be presented to the vendor within seven days (in person, by FAX, or electronically) after it is issued. Members will sign for only those items they receive from the vendor.

Complaints about vendor service, material availability or defective items should be made by memorandum through channels to the Operations Branch chief with a copy to the Services Branch chief. The date, time and names of the affected employees, along with the recommended solutions, will be included in the memorandum.

Fitting (1110.00)

a.  All-weather jackets and dress jackets will be fitted with the member wearing the body armor and full duty belt.

b.  Neck and sleeve length are to be correct for body proportions while wearing body armor. Shirt side tapering will only be altered at city expense when the body is of such proportion that excessive material causes the shirt to fit poorly. Any other tapering will be at the officer’s expense.

c.  Sworn female members may choose between male or female patterns. If there are tailoring problems that the uniform distributor cannot resolve, the RU manager or designee may approve additional alterations.

d.  Sworn members will not accept items from a uniform vendor until all items have been tried on for condition, proper size, fit and tailoring.

Body Armor (1110.00)

Members through the rank of Lieutenant wearing a uniform in a uniform patrol assignment (i.e., precincts including SROs, Traffic, Transit, TOD) will wear body armor, unless authorized by an RU manager.  Body armor is not required when members are wearing the Formal Uniform, a version of the Commanding Officers Uniform, or when authorized by the RU manager

Supervisors are responsible for designating when members in a non-uniform assignment will wear body armor. Some examples to be considered are:

a.  Operations deemed hazardous by a supervisor, (i.e., DVD raid, high-risk arrest, investigations at major crime scenes when a threat exists, etc.).

b.  Directed by a supervisor to wear body armor.

c.  Required by written directive (i.e., the range).

The Bureau recognizes that some sworn members may have physical conditions restricting their ability to wear body armor. Any member claiming a medical restriction will obtain a detailed written justification from a medical doctor that describes the physical condition and how that condition prevents the wearing of body armor. The justification will be forwarded, through channels, to the Services Branch chief for final determination. The Bureau retains the right to require an independent medical evaluation (at Bureau expense) to verify the determination that body armor cannot be worn. Such medical information will be maintained in a separate, confidential file.

The Bureau may attempt to provide an alternative assignment on a temporary basis to members with a bona fide medical restriction by giving that member an assignment that does not require wearing body armor. The Bureau will consider purchasing alternative body armor in order to address bona fide medical restrictions on a case by case basis.

Because body armor has a limited manufacturer’s warranty, body armor shall be inspected for fit and wear each year and replaced every five years. The serial number will be added to the member’s individual personnel information.

Body armor beyond the manufacturer’s warranty will be turned in to a designated member within the division/precinct for final disposition or disposal.

Issuance/Return of Badges (1110.00)

Only sworn members, honorably retired sworn members and persons designated by the Chief of Police or designee will be issued, allowed to purchase, or given a Bureau badge. Badges issued to members will be returned upon promotion, demotion, retirement, resignation, termination or at the request of a designated representative of the Chief of Police.

The Personnel Division (Personnel) will maintain an inventory that will be exchanged or loaned to members when their badges are being repaired.

Personnel will distribute one set of badges (uniform and cap) to sworn members upon employment, promotion or demotion. They will collect any issued badges from members on retirement, suspension, termination, resignation or other separation from City employment and forward to Fiscal.

Sworn members may purchase one additional badge set for the rank or position they currently hold or have held during their employment.

Cap and uniform badges issued to members will be titled with the member’s rank. Retirement badges will be inscribed on the back with the member’s dates of service and promotion(s), if applicable.

Presentation of badges to law enforcement dignitaries, ordering special badges for acrylic embedment, and other special situations will require the approval of the Chief of Police or designee.

Pins (1110.00)

Members are encouraged to display pins that are designed for wear with the uniform.

Authorized pins are:

a.  American flag.

b.  TriMet Pin (for duration of assignment to Transit Police Division).

c.  City of Portland Years of Service.

d.  Portland Police Association (PPA).

e.  Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT).

f.   Crisis Intervention Team (CIT).

g.  Field Training Officer (FTO).

h.  Motorcycle Pin.

i.   Police Memorial Pin.

j.   Special Emergency Reaction Team (SERT) Pin.

Authorized pins will be worn on the right pocket flap of the shirt.

The Rose Festival Pin is authorized the week preceding and the week of Rose Festival.

Members attending special community events are authorized to wear pins, buttons, or ribbons denoting that event. These items may not be for a political candidate or ballot measure.

Mourning Bands (1110.00)

Members are authorized to wear black mourning bands in honor of Bureau members or law enforcement personnel who have died in the line of duty. Mourning bands may also be authorized during Law Enforcement Memorial week. The Chief of Police will authorize the period they can be worn.

Patches (1110.00)

Only authorized patches are to be worn by members. Generally, only Bureau patches are worn on the shoulders of the uniform items. Exceptions must be approved by the Chief of Police.

Awards (1110.00)

Members are encouraged to display ribbons and medals (full size and miniature) designed for wear with the uniform in recognition of acts of valor, outstanding service, or unit recognition.

Refer to the Uniform and Clothing Guide for details.

The Uniform Committee will determine (on an individual basis) where members will wear awards that they have received from outside agencies.

Professional Appearance Standards (1110.00)

Sworn Hairstyle and Grooming Standards

a.  All sworn members will keep their hair clean, neatly trimmed and combed.

b.  Dyed, tinted or bleached hair must be within a naturally occurring color range and must be professional in appearance. For purposes of this order, naturally occurring color range does not include unique hair colors such as pink, blue, purple or green.

c.  Hair must be styled in such a manner so that it does not interfere with uniform headgear or any specialized equipment and will not interfere with officer safety and effectiveness.

d.  Non-uniform, sworn members may be temporarily excused from these hair and grooming regulations while on undercover assignment. However, such members will again comply with these regulations once the special assignment is completed or whenever wearing the official uniform.

Specific Sworn Male Standards (1110.00)

Facial hair may not be more than ¼ inch in length, and must not interfere with the natural seal of the issued gas mask.

a.  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.

b.  Mustaches and goatees must follow the natural arch of the mouth.

c.  Handlebar mustaches are prohibited.

d.  Goatees may not extend more than ¼ inch below the bottom of the chin.

e.  Sideburns may not extend below the lower opening of the ear and must end with a clean horizontal line, not flared out at the bottom.

f.   A man’s hair will be cut so as not to extend below the lower edge of the collar. Additionally, a man’s hair will not extend over the top of the ears.

g.  The Bureau will consider and may approve accommodations to this standard on a case by case basis. Such accommodations may be appropriate only in cases where the member demonstrates a religious or medical need for accommodation. In such instances, the member should bring the need for accommodation to the Bureau’s attention through the chain of command to the Chief of Police.

Specific Sworn Female Standards (1110.00)

a.  Hair will be neatly trimmed, shaped and in a style that permits wearing of the uniform cap or hat or other department emergency equipment.

b.  If hair is longer than collar length, it must be pulled back and cannot extend below the top of the shoulder blades.

c.  The Bureau will consider and may approve accommodations to this standard on a case by case basis. Such accommodations may be appropriate only in cases where the member demonstrates a religious or medical need for accommodation. In such instances, the member should bring the need for accommodation to the Bureau’s attention through the chain of command to the Chief of Police.

Non-Sworn, Male and Female Hairstyle and Grooming Standards (1110.00)

a.  All non-sworn members will keep their hair clean, neatly trimmed and combed. Hair must be styled in such a manner as to not interfere with the duties assigned within their respective division. Final determination will be at the discretion of the RU manager.

b.  Dyed, tinted or bleached hair must be within a naturally occurring color range, and be professional on appearance. For purposes of this order, naturally occurring color range does not include unique hair colors such as pink, blue, purple or green.

c.  Hair must be styled in such a manner so that it does not interfere with any specialized equipment and will not interfere with member safety and effectiveness.

d.  Mustaches and beards are allowed. They must be kept neatly trimmed.

Non-Sworn Male and Female Clothing Standards (1110.00)

Bureau approved uniforms are permitted as outlined by the assigned RU manager.

Jewelry (1110.00)

All members may wear jewelry that is clean, neat and of a style that presents a professional appearance, is not offensive to others, and is consistent with the type of assignment and duty performed.

Standards for wearing jewelry:

a.  No ring will be worn so that it interferes with the use of equipment or hinders the use of the hand and fingers.

b.  Sworn members, while in uniform, may wear one watch, one bracelet, and a necklace that is not visible.

c.  No more than two rings may be worn.

d.  One earring stud per natural earlobe is allowed. Plugs (used to enlarge piercing holes in the ear lobes) are prohibited.

e.  No tongue studs or visible body piercing (other than the listed earring stud), will be worn.

RU managers or designee may grant an exception to members where deviation from this policy is appropriate for a specific assignment.

Body Art (1110.00)

Visible body art on the face and neck is prohibited, except for reasonable cosmetic purposes. Members with visible tattoos prior to August 1, 2000 are exempt from this provision. Members will not expose any offensive forms of body art while on duty. Offensive forms of body art include images which are sexually explicit, racially and/or sexually biased or could be viewed as discriminatory in nature.

For the purposes of this directive, body art is defined as procedures used to alter the body’s appearance including, but not limited to, branding, scarification and tattoos.

Non-Sworn and Sworn, Non-Uniformed Assignment, Dress Code (1110.00)

Refer to the Uniform and Clothing Guide posted to the Intranet.

Court Attire (1110.00)

For all court appearances, including Traffic Court, Circuit Court, Federal Court, Grand Jury, preliminary hearings, depositions and any other appearance in a judicial setting, members will, without exception, appear in one of the attires listed below:

a.  Uniform of the day or Class A uniform.

b.  Professional business attire (generally duty weapons should remain concealed).


The Uniform Committee will continually review the clothing, uniform and equipment requirements of the Police Bureau. This will be done by making recommendations on uniforms and equipment, overseeing uniform/equipment contracts, resolving member complaints, ensuring process quality control and coordinating with the Safety Committee on mutual issues.

The Uniform Committee will be comprised of members from the Chief of Police’s Office and from Operations, Investigations, and Services Branches. This should include a representative from each precinct, Transit Police, Traffic Division, TOD, School Police, Detective Division and the Training Division. The committee will include at least one non-sworn member. The committee will normally meet on a monthly basis. Items for committee consideration can be sent directly to any committee member.

The aide to the Operations Branch chief will serve as the liaison to the uniform committee.

Bureau Members (1110.00)

Bureau members will:

a.  Sworn members will maintain at least one complete serviceable Class C, Class B and class A uniform. Non sworn members, if issued uniforms, will maintain at least two complete serviceable sets of uniforms.

b.  Be responsible for their uniforms and equipment (refer to DIR 317.40 for specifics). They are also responsible for keeping their uniforms and equipment clean and in good repair. This would include minor repairs, including buttons, small tears, etc.

c.  Not sign for any uniform or equipment unless it has been delivered to the member.

d.  Inform their supervisor when a uniform is defective or worn out or equipment items need replacement or repair.

e.  Return uniforms and equipment in good condition within the specified time frame or as required by the Bureau or supervisor’s instructions.

f.   Return all Bureau uniforms and equipment upon separation from the Bureau.

g.  Refer any recommendation for uniforms or equipment to the uniform committee.

h.  Upon status change, turn in unneeded uniforms and equipment and ensure they are issued appropriate uniforms and equipment for their new status.

i.   Detectives and Criminalists will maintain at least one complete and serviceable Class C Uniform.

j.   Commanding officers will maintain at least one complete serviceable Class C, Class B, Class B Commanding Officer Summer Uniform, Class A, Commanding Officer Summer Dress Uniform, and Commanding Officer Dress Uniform.

Command Staff and Supervisors (1110.00)

a.  May exempt a member from wearing the uniform for the duration of a specific assignment if civilian clothing would be more appropriate. RU managers and supervisors will ensure their members conform to the uniform and equipment requirements.

b.  Will maintain a requisition and tracking mechanism, including payment to vendors. Requests for replacement of worn or unserviceable uniforms or equipment will be made to the RU manager or designee. Copies of the uniform order form will be retained pending verification of the order. Careful inspection will be made for negligence or intentional misuse.

c.  Inspect members to ensure all uniforms and equipment are serviceable and authorized and that the body armor is less than five years old.

d.  Publish division Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) that defines what their members will routinely wear in the workplace.

e.  In situations where duty assignments require deviations from this directive, RU managers may authorize variances. The approval of such variances will be kept to a minimum.

f.   RU managers or their designees have the responsibility to recommend to the Chief of Police uniforms and equipment appropriate for their specific assignment and mission.

Branch Chiefs (1110.00)

a.  Recommend approval of specialty uniforms and equipment after review by the uniform committee and Chief of Police.

b.  Review the uniform and equipment procurement system.

c.  Review proposals from the Uniform Committee and forward with a recommendation to the Chief of Police.

Personnel Division (1110.00)

a.  When notified that a member will be leaving the Bureau, Personnel will have the member complete a notice of separation and will provide the member with a separation checklist. Personnel will notify the Services Branch chief if the member fails to complete the checkout.

b.  Coordinate with Fiscal to ensure appropriate badges are available.

Fiscal Services Division (1110.00)

a.  Maintain status and assignment records to ensure policy compliance and be responsible for the destruction, maintenance, inventory, distribution, sales and ordering of badges.

b.  Process payments to vendors.


Training Division (1110.00)

a.  Coordinate with Personnel for the initial issue of uniforms and equipment when new sworn members are hired.

b.  Verify the turn-in of specified uniforms and equipment when a member leaves City employment.

c.  Recommend equipment to be worn/carried by sworn members. Any disagreements regarding equipment should be referred to the Services Branch chief.