I have a question, wondering where i stand and what i can do about this, if anything.
When i started at my job in the shelter (cleaning animal kennels) my peircings were not a problem, i asked this in the interview as i have a septum piercing which tends to be a problem for whatever reason. I then decided to get snake bites. I asked my department head was it okay - she said yes, i asked my supervisor - she said yes, i even asked collegues - they said yes. Now a few months later we get an email stating for people working with the animals (im now in animal health so still closely working with the animals) to not wear hooped earings, lip jewlery, nose rings (but studs okay) and for any flesh tunnels to be solid plugs ONLY. For health and safety purposes.
I replied i can hide my septum but i was told my lips were okay, they heal up fast and cost me a lot of money and i wouldnt have done it if i wasnt told it was okay. I asked if i could wear studs, since nose studs are okay, or even retainers, and was flatly told no. Nothing. Only nose studs.
There is probably only 5 people at my work with lip piercings, maybe 2 with stretched ears and a grand total of zero jewelery related injuries. As you can imagine im feeling a little picked on here, being told flat out no, not even retainers. And to be honest if im gonna have something grab my piercings, they are WAY too close to my face and im gonna get my whole face bitten off, torn piercings will be last thing on my mind at that point. The only time i ever even have my face close to an animal is when im holding them for bloodwork and occasionally use my head as an extra thing to keep the animal still.
So basically, can i do anything? I never signed anything agreeing to jewlery policy, only clothing like scrubs etc and no open toed shoes. I dont see any more of a problem with lip studs than nose studs would cause to be honest.
Hmm, that's tricky :/ I was going to say maybe they're put off by letting you have lip studs because if the ball falls off from the labret, an animal could swallow/eat it, but if that's the case, then why are people allowed nose/ear studs?
Is there anyone in particular within management that you could go speak to about it and explain that you had asked before you got it done if it's okay? They may have just changed company policy and therefore you weren't breaking anything before, but now you are.
Do you have many breaks at work? My partner has his lip pierced and if he has to take it out at work, he'll put it back in at lunch/break, but he has had it done for a couple of years now, so it won't try to heal up straight away. Or maybe you can come to a personal agreement with your manager where you agree to wear your lip piercings but you understand that there is a risk they may get ripped out? That way they cover themselves and you get to wear your jewellery.
Sorry if I haven't been much help and I hope you sort it out soon.
You can't lose hope when it's hopeless.
You gotta hope more,
then put your fingers in your ears and go,
"Blah blah blah blah!"
Kame, i've asked to speak to senior management today so hopefully something can be worked out. They literally just changed the policy on tuesday, and im pretty sure most people with ring piercings aren't going to change them :( It feels like its mostly the lip piercings they care about, the rest was just to keep us from yelling at them!
Mute.Scream, i was wondering about that, like a small band aid or something if its really that big an issue
To be honest some retainers are really subtle so you could try wearing them and see if they notice? Sorry for the lame advice. All I can suggest apart from that is keeping your jewellery on you and popping it through in your lunch break just to keep the holes open - that's what I'm going to do when I get a new job.
I'm not sure about the laws in your area; however, in North Carolina, an employer cannot punish/fire you in any way if you are not in correlation with NEW rules. Since you were hired before they made that rule, you shouldn't be held to it.
However, since it is a rule regarding your safety (I'm guessing?), I would think that you would have to adhere to it. :(
I personally think you should comply to show that you are willing to compromise at this job - but I have a lip piercing and I have to take mine out because I work in food, and I hate it. So to compromise I have a clear retainer which makes it hard to see, and when I am dealing with food I put plasters over it.
When i asked to speak to senior management my email was ignored for three days (after replies within hours) and then the reply was simply 'only nose studs are allowed'
My department head got back from her holidays this week and when she heard about it (from a vet who doesn't even have peircings but is mad) she laughed, said well thats stupid, ill see abotu getting you guys grandfathered in on the rule. Evidently everyone who the rule actually applies to sees it as stupid since if something is THAT close to our faces - we're getting bitten. And our compulsary lanyards are far more likely to be grabbed by animals, and even with me have on several occasions been grabbed by dogs!
Is it just with the biting though? I think too there may be a risk in some instances of a piercing falling out and an animal swallowing it (which, although it is a small object, you never know what it might do inside them). This, of course, does not allow for the logical of allowing nose piercings. Have they mentioned why they are allowed one type of piercing but no others? Doesn't seem to make sense!
Hopefully your department head can clarify all this a bit for you.
Its meant to be 'for our safety' so i assume its the biting/catching or making a bite worse. They wouldn't tell me why they allowed nose but not lip - another question the HR girl simply refused to answer - its a bit ridiculous.
My department head hasn't mentioned it since so we'll see, she thinks its silly to allow nose studs if banning all lip jewlery and doesn't see a reason for it either :\
Hey. It sounds like you have a similar job to me...
I work in a smallish practice (well, it's not a big corporate one, and I suppose you would call it clinics..) and I was told square one I wasn't allowed any jewellery. I have scaffolds, 2 x top ears with hoops and a conch. (I realise none of this is on my face). Anyway, I'm almost a year in, and all they've asked me to do it put two bars in my scaffold instead of one long one so I look a) presentable to the public b) animals are tricky and can get anywhere fast so it's not pulled out and c) so when I'm in theatre, I'm not posing a risk. With my hoops, they've warned me about them, but from this point onwards it's my responsibility. Thankfully, everyone who I work with and my bosses are pretty chilled.
I agree with Rawrk though. I don't know about you, but my job means the world to me, and I would be an absolute wreck without it. Compliance may be the best thing to avoid having warnings and losing your job....in the mean time you can pursue finding out about it, questioning and getting to the bottom of it.
Hope you sort it soon!
Last edited by starryeyed : 04-05-2012 at 07:41 PM.
Yeah, i do love my job but at the same time nobody else has complied and they recently banned cell phones (aka only way to get someone to come help when you get locked in a dog run/kennel) which nobody listened to either so im doubting anything will come of it - i will probably try to find some PTFE here and do that or a clear retainer if i can find one - i found some in my regular piercing places but they were the next gauge bigger than my lips n theyre still too new to be trying to stretch due to my wussyness :P
Just go on the site and tap into the search bar what you want and I usually use the sort by tool to put them in price (including p&p) :lowest first, then you get the cheapest one. Bays really good, I think you can use it as a guest now, don't even have to register.
Mand, South Wales, Full-time working, single mother to 2 scarily independent girls.
I AM A PROUD PLUMERIA SISTER