Nebraska system's hair policy for nurses sparks backlash on social media

Nurses have flooded social media with posts using the hashtag "showmeyourbuns" in response to a photo of Bryan Health's personal appearance policy, which was been widely circulated online.  

While the policy is not new, the Lincoln, Neb.-based system recently updated it to allow nurses to have unnatural hair colors. The widely circulated image depicts a written memo to nursing unit staff about the update, which includes the following language: "There is emphasis on hair being clean, neatly managed, therefore no 'messy buns.'"

The text is accompanied by images of nurses with various bun hairstyles that do not meet appearance standards. 

Many nurses took to social media to call out this part of the memo, arguing that the health system should be less concerned about nurses' appearance and more focused on serious issues such as staffing shortages and staff well-being. 

"You realize most hospitals are dealing with severely understaffed units and nurse burn out. How about you worry about your staff ratios, not your nurses' hair," one Twitter user wrote July 28. 

The health system said the social media account that first shared the screenshotted memo "grossly misrepresented a long standing Bryan Health policy" and that the official policy "includes no mention of messy buns."

"The policy does and will continue to reference clean, neatly managed hair, appropriately secured out of the face. Appropriately secured hair is important for a myriad of safety reasons," a spokesperson for the system told Becker's.

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