Disney will allow park workers to have beards

Workers at Disney

Guests walk toward a monorail station Sunday, July 5, 2009, at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla., after the park's monorail transit system was shut down after two monorail trains crashed early Sunday morning in the Magic Kingdom section of the park, killing one train's operator, emergency officials said. (AP Photo/The Orlando Sentinel, George Skene)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- Workers at Disney's theme parks will be allowed to grow beards and goatees for the first time ever.

A Disney spokeswoman said Monday that the new policy will apply to workers in Florida and California starting next month.

Disney had prohibited all facial hair on its theme park workers since Disneyland opened in California in the mid-1950s. The company revised its policy in 2000 to allow mustaches, provided they were grown on vacation and not at work.

Starting Feb. 3, beards, mustaches and other facial growth will be allowed.

Disney periodically reassesses its grooming requirements. The Disney spokeswoman says officials decided now was a good time to revise the hairr policy.

The policy change also allows workers in areas without visitor contact to have casual Fridays.

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