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Lawmakers Consider Age Restrictions For Pa. Tanning Salons

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Renee Foulk testifies about her experience with tanning beds in front of the Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee. (Credit: Tony Romeo)

Renee Foulk testifies about her experience with tanning beds in front of the Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee. (Credit: Tony Romeo)

(Capitol dome, Harrisburg, Pa.   File photo) Tony Romeo
  Tony Romeo is Harrisburg bureau chief for KYW Newsradio...
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HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) – Pennsylvania lawmakers are considering legislation that would make indoor tanning salons off-limits to young people.

The state House Judiciary Committee heard testimony from 32-year-old melanoma survivor Renee Foulk (pictured), who urged lawmakers to pass a bill that would prohibit anyone under the age of 18 from patronizing indoor tanning salons.

“I so desperately wish I could go back in time to tell my 16-year-old self not to go to those indoor tanning beds,” Foulk said.

Doctors testified to the dangers from exposure to ultra-violet rays in tanning salons, but Grant Miller, president of the “Sun Your Buns” tanning salons in the Erie area, argued that sunlight is also dangerous, and that banning young folks from using his facilities will just cause them to bake themselves in the real thing.

“You are forcing them to lie outside on shiny reflective blankets for hours on end,” Miller argued.

Dr. Gavin Robertson of Penn State University told the state House Judiciary Committee that unlike a smoker, whose lungs will recover if he quits, skin damage suffered by someone overexposed to ultraviolet rays or “UV” is permanent and cumulative.

“The World Health Organization recommends banning tanning beds completely for kids under 18. And to classify UV as a ‘class 1’ carcinogen,” Dr. Robertson testified.

The chairman of the Judiciary Committee could not immediately say when the bill might come up for a vote.

Reported by Harrisburg Bureau Chief Tony Romeo, KYW Newsradio 1060

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