Monday, January 25, 2010

Rep. Mary Brandenburg Files House Bill 729 on Tattoo Safety

As tattoos have grown in popularity, respected tattoo artists and medical professionals have recognized the need to enhance the health practices associated with the industry.

Today, state Rep. Mary Brandenburg (D-West Palm Beach) joined representatives of several statewide health associations and tattoo artists in announcing the filing of legislation to make safer the process of getting a tattoo in Florida.

House Bill 729 filed by Representative Brandenburg for the 2010 legislative session will protect the public health and require parental consent for children to get a tattoo.

The legislation will require that no individual under the age of 16 be tattooed, except for medical reasons by a doctor or dentist. The proposal also calls for any individual under the age of 18 receiving a tattoo to be accompanied by their permanent adult guardian.

Additionally, House Bill 729 will require tattoo artists to be licensed by the Florida Department of Health, which will provide classes concerning blood-borne pathogens that must be completed for obtaining or renewing a license. Furthermore, under the proposal, all tattooing must be done in a facility licensed for tattoo artistry by the Florida Department of Health.

Among those supporting House Bill 729 are the: Florida Medical Association, the Florida Society of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery, the Florida Professional Tattoo Artists Guild, Florida Blood Services, and the Florida Association of Beauty Professionals.

“The absence of statewide regulations of the tattoo industry in Florida allows unnecessary health risks,” said Representative Brandenburg. “I am proud to work with tattoo artists and medical professionals on legislation that will protect the public health and help small businesses. Passage of House Bill 729 will be a big step in helping prevent the spread of infections and communicable diseases.”

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