Tanning bill would require parental consent for teens

Athena Lacaire gets a tan at TanWorks on Summer Street.

Indoor tanning talk is heating up as a bill restricting teen access to tanning salons inches closer to the House floor.

The bill, which slid through the Senate last week, bans 14- and 15-year-olds from using indoor tanning equipment without written consent from a doctor, and requires parents of 16 and 17 year-olds to sign a consent form that warns about skin cancer risks associated with indoor tanning.

“We know that tanning beds cause cancer. We’ve known this for several years, and we know this is a major issue for Caucasian youths – primarily girls – since they use tanning beds about six times more than boys,” said Deb Girard, executive director of the Melanoma Foundation of New England.

TanWorks employee Athena Lacaire said that she understands the concern, but does not agree that it warrants permission from a doctor.

“I can see why they’d have a problem with kids coming in to tan at such a young age, but if their parents are allowing them to tan, I feel like that’s on them. I want people to be healthy, but I also don’t agree with people telling others what to do,” she said.

Lacaire’s co-worker agreed, saying that parents should make the call. “Until your child is 18, you have control of your child. I don’t think they should have to go the doctor and get a note if they just want to get a tan for a prom,” said Fallon MacDougall.

Tanning salon patron Sonja Styblo said that while there is nothing wrong with adults tanning in moderation, kids should be held to a stricter standard.

“I’m all about getting doctor’s consent, because it’s not good for you,” she said.

The House has rejected the legislation each time it has passed the Senate since it was first introduced five years ago.

Girard said its unpopularity in the House may be due concerns over potential impact on small businesses and parental rights.

California, and more recently, Vermont, have both passed legislation banning indoor tanning for all minors.

If the House passes the legislation, which Girard is hopeful it will, the state will be that much closer to following in the footsteps of those states.

“The thing that helped us most in the last few months is the New Jersey tanning mom story,” Girard said.

Shedding light on fake bakes

Indoor tanning is the leading contributor to Melanoma, a highly aggressive form of skin cancer most common among Caucasian people.
Melanoma is the most common cancer among women aged 25-32, and it kills one person every hour
New England states have a higher than average rate of melanoma
As many as 10,000 people a year die from melanoma
People who use tanning beds once a month before the age of 35 increase their melanoma risk by 75 percent
Using a tanning bed for 20 minutes is equivalent to spending one to three hours a day at the beach with no sun protection at all
Tanning beds put out three to six times the amount of radiation given off by the sun
For most people, 5-10 minutes of unprotected sun 2-3 times a week is enough to help skin make Vitamin D, which is a health essential


Train selfie star who got kicked in the…

  A 22-year-old Canadian man who posted a video of himself getting kicked in the head by a train conductor is set to cash in…


Call of Duty hoaxer blamed for $100K SWAT…

A heavilly-armed SWAT team and an army of police officers stormed a Long Island home fearing a grisly double homicide – only to find it…


Minnie Driver tweets naked celebrity snap to 'shut…

Actress Minnie Driver has responded to bitchy critics who sniped about her bikini body by Tweeting a naked picture of herself. The 44-year-old star of…


American middle classes no longer world's richest (guess…

America's middle classes are no longer the richest in the world – having been overtaken in the wealth stakes by their Canadian counterparts. For almost…


John Turturro tags in for Robert De Niro…

The cast of the courtroom drama miniseries has undergone yet another shift. Following Robert De Niro's exit, the cable network has brought in John Turturro…


"The Shape She Makes", an "extraordinary treat" at…

“The Shape She Makes” is a fascinating melding of theater and dance in a narrative that exposes human vulnerability in its purest form. Initially, the…


TV watch list, Tuesday, April 22: 'Glee,' 'Agents…

'Glee' Rachel makes her Broadway debut in "Funny Girl." Remember when she was just a high school drama nerd? FOX, 8PM 'Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'…

The Word

Lindsay Lohan's big, drunk interview

Lindsay Lohan appears to be completely off the wagon now, if Kode magazine's chronicle of her trip to Coachella is any indication. According to the…


MLB video highlights: Yankees rout Red Sox, 9-3

Jon Lester allows eight runs in 4 2/3 innings taking loss


MLB Power Rankings: Brewers best in baseball, Dodgers,…

MLB Power Rankings: Brewers best in baseball, Dodgers, Cardinals, Yankees surge. The A's, Braves, Rangers, Giants and Rockies are also in the top 10.


American runners stand tallest in 2014 Boston Marathon

American runners stand tallest in 2014 Boston Marathon


2014 Boston Marathon results: American Meb Keflezighi wins…

2014 Boston Marathon results: American Meb Keflezighi wins men's race


How to burn off all that Easter candy

Sorry to be a buzzkill, but you can't eat chocolate eggs and Jelly Bellys forever.


Powdered alcohol: 5 things to know about 'Palcohol'

What's the deal with powdered alcohol? Here's what you need to know about Palcohol.


Travel hacks: 6 tips on living out of…

Lynne Martin shares her travel hacks on living out of just two suitcases.


Tough Mudder pro gives tips on conquering a…

Learn hacks from head designer Nolan Kombol.