Ask a Cop: Can Cops Wear Glasses?

You can wear glasses, but if you are color blind, you are in trouble.

If you have a question for the police, forward it to brad.kava@patch.com and he'll send it off for you.

Question:  I want to join a police force and then eventually go into the FBI. The only problem is that my uncorrected eyesight is definitely worse than 20/20 (w/ astigmatism) and I'm color blind. What can I do? I'm currently studying Criminal Justice in college so if those factors will stop me, I'd have to change my major and career choice now.

Answer, CHP officer Sarah Jackson:

For CHP and Santa Cruz Sheriff's Office jobs, the rules for those who wear glasses are:

Those who have successfully worn soft contact lenses for 12 months need only pass a 20/20 vision test with their contacts in.
For glasses and/or hard contact lens wearers, their vision needs to be 20/40 uncorrected and correctable to 20/20.
Every applicant must also pass a color test (for color blindness).

Does that sound fair to you? Should color blind people be allowed to join the police force? Tell us in the comments!

David H. Perez February 07, 2013 at 05:12 AM
This comment is completely irrelevant and inappropriate and takes away from the subject of the article, like some of mine have. Will this one get deleted, as many of mine have, and as I am requesting???
White in Watson February 07, 2013 at 06:36 AM
It doesn't bother me that cops are required to see in color. How else will they find that green honda civic they're looking for? And Adrian, learning how to spell racism might help stop "raceisim" as you wrote.
Chuck February 07, 2013 at 06:04 PM
@Adrian: I have to admit, I thought that was kinda funny! And as for Rebecca's comment, I have to agree with john jay: What about suspect's hair and skin color. Was the suspect car red or dark purple? Was the traffic light red or green, not just "the top light or bottom light"? Any attorney finding out about a colorblind officer will rip that testimony to shreds. See if your son might like another avenue of public safety work that doesn't demand the color vision aspect.
David Waters April 05, 2013 at 10:37 PM
Thanks for this post. I wish that I had learned more about these "Ottawa glasses" a few years back. Thanks again. http://mcleodoptometryclinic.ca


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