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Businesses Weigh In On Teen Tanning Bill

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By Brittany Cooper

Twin Falls, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV ) Idaho lawmakers are considering legislation that would restrict certain minors from using tanning beds. Not everyone is for this bill, but those who are feel tanning poses serious health risks to children.

Anyone under 15 would need medical clearance under this bill and those between 16 and 18 need parental consent or a prescription.

Native Skin Tanning is a downtown Twin Falls business looking to be the source for your tanning needs. Last year Native Skin shared its stance on a similar bill before it failed in the senate. The feelings have stayed the same.

Jim Wagenman, Manager of Native Skin says, "if this were to pass, basically what it would mean is that government agents would come in here and inspect me on something that I've been doing all along."

What Wagerman is referring to is requiring parental consent for minors.
A key element featured in House Bill 191.

"I already require that a parent sign for a minor if they're going to tan. I've always had that in effect," adds Wagerman.

Violators could face a misdemeanor and be fined up to $100. Ultimately though, when a teenager makes a decision to tan, whose responsibility is it to monitor that?

Wagerman says, "it's the role of government to protect our rights to protect ourselves. Government is not there to protect us."

If a summer glow from a tanning bed isn't your style, spray tanning is an option.

Over the last six months, Serendipity Spa and Boutique has seen a large increase in clients using this service.

Lisa Hawkins, Owner of Serendipity Spa and Boutique says, "right now everybody is using it from young to old, depends on who's going on vacations, just a little bit of a spray tan makes you feel really nice."

Lobbyists with the Idaho Medical Association are concerned tanning heightens risk for skin cancer. Nevertheless, taking care of your skin is a priority for many. As research shows 80 percent of damaged skin is done before the age of 18.

Only California and Vermont have banned the use of tanning equipment by anyone under 18. This is according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.


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