Peel Region Adopts By-law Protecting Minors From Harmful Effects of Indoor Tanning
BRAMPTON, ON. September 28, 2012 – Peel Regional Council passed a by-law yesterday restricting minors under the age of 18 from using commercial tanning equipment as of January 1, 2013. Peel joins the provinces of Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, Quebec, and the Town of Oakville which already prohibit the use of tanning equipment by minors.
“We are compelled to act quickly to protect minors in Peel from the harmful effects of indoor tanning,” says Dr. David Mowat, Medical Officer of Health, Peel Region. “Peel Public Health considers this matter an urgent one since the risk of melanoma is 75% greater for those who use a tanning bed before the age of 35, compared to those who never tan.”
Regional Councillor, Bonnie Crombie has been a vocal advocate for tanning restrictions and strong supporter of the by-law. “This by-law means we can help protect minors – particularly young girls – from the risk associated with indoor tanning,” says Crombie. “I’m thrilled that Peel is among those jurisdictions acting quickly to protect residents.”
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer while melanoma accounts for approximately 75 percent of skin cancer deaths. In Ontario, an estimated 35,000 new cases of skin cancer were diagnosed in 2011, accounting for approximately one-third of all cancer diagnoses. The International Agency for Research on Cancer classifies artificial tanning equipment as a Group 1 carcinogen (carcinogenic to humans).
Legal restrictions prohibiting the use of commercial tanning equipment by minors are consistent with recommendations from the World Health Organization, the Canadian Cancer Society, the Canadian Paediatric Society, the Canadian Medical Association and the Ontario Medical Association.
A private member’s bill regulating the use of tanning facilities by youth is pending in the Ontario legislature. Bill 74, An Act to Help Prevent Skin Cancer, passed first reading in April and is being brought before the provincial legislature later this year.
For more information, residents can contact Peel Public Health at 905-799-7700.
The Regional Municipality of Peel was incorporated in 1974 on the principle that certain community and infrastructure services are most cost-effectively administered over a larger geographical area. The Region of Peel serves more than one million residents in the cities of Mississauga, Brampton and the town of Caledon.