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Should Teens be Banned from Tanning Beds?

By Cynthia Hsu, Esq. on July 01, 2011 6:42 AM

New teen tanning regulations may soon be a reality for tanning salons.

California, one of the largest states in the U.S., is considering implementing a new ban that would prevent teens under the age of 18 from going under the lamp, reports the AP.

Teens under the age of 14 are already prohibited from using tanning beds. Under the current regulations, teens between the ages of 14 and 18 can tan, but only with parental approval, the AP reports.

State Sen. Ted Lieu has been pushing for the new California legislation. He says that many signatures on parental approval forms from teens are forged, reports the AP.

Around 21 other states are considering similar legislation.

What does this mean for small business owners - specifically, tanning salons? Well, one thing is for sure: if the legislation goes through, there will be less customers coming through the door. In places were teens make up a large contingent of tanning enthusiasts, businesses can suffer up to a 10% loss to their income, says John Overstreet, a spokesman for the Indoor Tanning Association, to the AP.

And, if the regulations pass, tanning salons will need to take extra care not to be violating any of the new rules. Checking IDs for teens - or those young adults that look like they may be teens - will probably need to be a vital part of the business' daily routine.

Even if the regulations don't pass, in states where parental approval is required, perhaps tanning salons should try other methods of parental verification besides just a signature in order to stop teens from illegally getting into tanning beds. In-person approvals could be one route. In fact, one tanning salon owner in Los Angeles, Wayne LaVassar, believes that in-person approvals would be a great compromise short of an actual ban on teen tanning, reports the AP.

Tanning salons should definitely keep checking the news. New teen tanning regulations might shake up a tanning salon's business practices soon.

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