The New York Police Department Thursday reinstated a Muslim police officer who was suspended for not shaving his beard, according to court documents filed by the city. The department also agreed to review its no-beard policy, reports NBC.
Masood Syed, who works as a law clerk for the NYPD's Deputy Commissioner of Trials, was restored to full-duty and permitted to keep his one-inch beard, which he wears as a Sunni Muslim, according to court filings and a statement from the law firm representing him, Beldock Levine & Hoffman.
"I'm excited to be back at work," Syed said in a statement. "It seems like the department has taken the crucial first step in addressing an important and growing concern of officers of many different faiths."
Syed, 32, filed a class-action lawsuit on June 22 in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, challenging the constitutionality of the NYPD's ban on beards. The day before, Syed was suspended without pay and stripped of his badge and gun for refusing to shave his beard. But a federal judge ordered the NYPD to continue paying Syed's salary and benefits, at least until a preliminary injunction hearing which was scheduled for July 8.