SB 1229 An Act further regulating tanning facilities was heard before the Massachusetts Joint Committee on Public Health on Tuesday, July 28. Children’s Melanoma Prevention staff were present to testify in support of the bill: Maryellen Maguire-Eisen, Executive Director, Maura Flynn, SunAWARE Educator, and Marianne Tawa, Advisory Board. A version of this bill has been introduced by Senator James Timilty (D-Walpole) annually for nearly a decade. In the past, DNA members and other advocates have testified in support, but the bill has either died in committee or else has been sent to the Senate floor with substantial changes. For example, during the 2013-2014 legislative session the language was changed. The amended language banned anyone under age 16 but allowed use of tanning devices with parental in-person consent for teens age 16 and 17. It is CMPF’s stand that parental consent is not effective since there is data that shows that many visits to tanning parlors are by mothers who go to tan with their teenage daughters . That bill however never made it through the arduous journey to become law before the legislative session ended.
On Friday, July 31 SB 1229 was reported out favorably by the committee and for the first time there was no substantial change to the language that prohibits individuals under age 18 from using indoor tanning devices. The next step is for the bill to go before the Massachusetts Senate. That should happen sometime during the fall since formal sessions have ended for the summer. However, the bill could end up in another committee such as Ways and Means or Rules and Ethics depending on the decision of the Clerk of the Senate. Such a move would significantly slow the bill’s progress.
This is the final version of the bill that was sent to the Clerk of the Senate:
SENATE DOCKET, NO. 1565 FILED ON: 1/16/2015
SENATE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . No. 1229
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
In the One Hundred and Eighty-Ninth General Court
An Act further regulating tanning facilities.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:
SECTION 1. Section 207 of chapter 111 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2014 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after the definition of “Board”, in line 8, the following definition: -
“Operator”, a person employed and trained by a tanning facility to control, maintain or operate a tanning device in compliance with sections 207 to 213, inclusive, and to assist or instruct customers of the tanning facility in the correct use or operation of a tanning device.
SECTION 2. Section 210 of said chapter 111, as so appearing, is hereby amended by inserting in line 6 after the first sentence the following sentence:-
No tanning facility shall employ as an operator a person under 18 years of age or permit any other employee of the tanning facility who is under 18 years of age to operate a tanning device.
SECTION 3. Said chapter 111 is hereby further amended by striking out section 211, as so appearing, and inserting in place thereof the following section:-
Section 211. No person under 18 years of age shall use a tanning device.