It’s the month of Movember, when men across Canada sprout moustaches to raise funds and awareness for men’s health, specifically prostrate cancer.
The Abbotsford Police Department is on board. The force is relaxing its regulations concerning facial hair to allow members to take part. Of the department’s 216 officers and 75 civilians, some 62 are unleashing their hairy inner male and joining the Movember movement.
Women in the department are also joining in support and fundraising, as are some members of Abbotsford Fire Rescue.
Among these men who have in many cases spent decades clean-shaven, it has created a stir.
“We’re so big behind things like Cops for Cancer, so it’s an easy one for us to jump on board and have some fun with it,” said Deputy Chief Rick Lucy behind a salt-and-pepper goatee, sprouting on a face that has been shorn through 30 years of policing.
“For a lot of folks, they’re growing it for the first time.”
Sgt. Casey Vinet is taking some heat – being accused of taking his wife’s mascara brush to his dark handlebar ‘stache. He in turn mocks Const. Ian MacDonald’s modest effort with unkind comparisons to Tom Selleck. MacDonald responds that he will be happy if he can reach Johnny Depp levels of follicle prominence.
They are coming up with awards. The Cheetos award for the cheesiest moustache; the Best College Try award, for which Tom Chesley has emerged as an early favourite; and the Most Sinister Stache award.
The APD’s regulations state that members can have goatees or moustaches, but they cannot be in the process of growing them while at work. MacDonald joked that under the rules he would need a one-year leave of absence to grow one, then return to work.
The jibes will no doubt continue until their razors re-emerge at the end of Movember.