Chem-Bio Threats Still Overrule Army Beards

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August 10, 2017 | Originally published by Date Line: August 10 on

As many of you have heard, soldiers in today’s Army can wear beards for reasons of religious freedom. But that doesn’t mean they don’t have to keep a razor at the ready if the threat of chemical and biological agents arises.

In January, the Army granted brigade level commanders the authority to grant soldiers religious accommodation requests requiring a waiver for uniform wear and grooming practices such as wearing a hijab, wearing a beard and wearing a turban or under-turban/patka, with uncut beard and uncut hair.

…But as anyone who has ever worn a protective mask knows – they don’t work right unless they are sealed against your skin – something facial hair will prevent.