Clause 2

Part of Sunbeds (Regulation) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 5:00 pm on 10th February 2010.

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Photo of Siân James Siân James Labour, Swansea East 5:00 pm, 10th February 2010

One of the questions about the Bill that has come up on several occasions is what is happening in America. Apparently some states have a complete ban, and others have introduced parental consent, whereby the parent gives consent for their child to use the sunbed or accompanies their under-18 child to the sunbed salon.

The interesting thing about the research that has been undertaken in America is that the process is not working. I am not surprised by that. In three of the states where research was undertaken, 11 per cent. of salons were still allowing access to young people who did not have anybody with them or any form of parental consent. Seventy-seven per cent. were getting away with it in Wisconsin, and 80 per cent. in Illinois. States such as Virginia and Washington are introducing legislation to ban the use of sunbeds by young people under the age of 18 because parental consent does not work.

As my right hon. Friend said, we need a concentrated, co-ordinated approach. Parents do their best and try to explain the dangers to their children, but young people want to experiment. What we are seeing in America is that parental consent is important, but it does not work.