Help Wanted: Tattoos/Piercings Not a Problem
By George Anderson
Unemployment in Hawaii is at an all-time low and restaurant operators and retailers are learning that, to find good employees, it is necessary to get beyond their looks, as in the case of body art (tattoos) and piercings.
Eighteen-year-old Nick Brashears is apparently one of those employees.
According to the Pacific Business News, Mr. Brashears has “two eyebrow piercings, a nose ring and a stud below his lower lip, plus two dime-sized ear piercings along with tattoos on his arms and legs.”
He had been working at a Subway but left because he was asked to remove his jewelry. His new employer, Cyber Bite Cafe in Waikiki, apparently is happy with Mr. Brashears just as he is, nose ring and all.
As he tells it, “They don’t care about the piercings. They just care about my work performance.”
Bill Tobin, managing partner of Tiki’s Grill & Bar and chairman of the Hawaii Restaurant Association said, “There was a time when restaurants were able to be very picky about whom they hire. Now that unemployment is so low, we have to take the best people regardless of tattoos and piercings and try and accommodate them or compromise.”
Rainer Kumbroch, operations manager for Roy’s Restaurants, said, “We try to be flexible. But anything that is outwardly offensive to people is just not allowed. In the hiring process, you get a lot of that out of the way.”
Moderator’s Comment: Are employers are out-of-synch with the modern definition of beauty and acceptable appearance when they refuse to hire teenagers
and young adults bearing tattoos and/or body piercings? Where do you stand on this subject in terms of the rights of employees to self-expression and employers to run a business?
George Anderson – Moderator