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Health Unit for London-Middlesex Canada

One of the most comprehensive coverages of the tanning industry and tanning regulations in the world. Please check the various reports in the search above for details on how the London-Middlesex Health Unit handled the job over the last few years.

Safety Regulations & Guidelines For Tanning Salon Facilities

Owners/operators of tanning salons must adhere to the federal Radiation Emitting Devices Act (RED Act) and follow these guidelines. Notification of Incidence: Where an injury to a person is reported to the owner/ operator by a duly qualified medical practitioner as a result of an exposure to the tanning equipment under the owner's control, the owner shall inform the Health Unit immediately. Artificial Tanning & Health Effects
  • Does using artificial tanning equipment cause cancer?
  • Are there health benefits of using artificial tanning equipment?
  • Can using artificial tanning equipment protect you from developing Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)?
  • Can artificial tanning protect me from sunburn by getting a base tan?
  • Should I use artificial tanning equipment for my health? Why is this a public health issue?

Artificial Tanning Use in Middlesex County - 2005

This is a ten page report that followed an investigation of the tanning industry commissioned by the Health Unit prior to the Artificial Tanning Symposium held in London in April 2005. Artificial Tanning Symposium - London, Ontario - April 5, 2005

World leaders in research, public health policy, prevention and treatment presented the most current research on the health effects of artificial tanning. The prevailing approach of the rapidly growing and increasingly organized artificial tanning industry is to claim artificial UV is a safe way to tan which may offer a number of health benefits as well, including Vitamin-D and relief from Seasonal Affective Disorder.

These myths create a culture of misinformation and confusion among consumers that leads to risky decision-making. One of the main purposes of the symposium is to debunk these harmful myths with credible research.

  • Health Canada proposes sweeping changes in sunbed regulations
    Reported by the CBC - March 18, 2004 My comments - These proposed regulations are totally useless. Health Canada doesn't have the guts or the manpower to do anything to stop the abuse by sunbed operators. A warning label on a sunbed is not going to stop teens from going, and it's certainly not going to stop the abuse by operators who have the older beds?

    Children and Sunbeds

  • Sunbed abuse of children is out of control - Pediatrics - June 2002 Use of Sunscreen, Sunburning Rates, and Tanning Bed Use Among More Than 10 000 US Children and Adolescents Huge study done by researchers at Boston University that involved over 10,000 boys and girls age 12-18 from all 50 States. Nearly 10% of respondents used a tanning bed during the previous year. Girls were far more likely than boys to report tanning bed use (14.4 vs 2.4), and older girls (ages 15Ğ18) were far more likely than younger girls (ages 12Ğ14) to report tanning bed use (24.6% vs 4.7). Tanning bed use increased from 7% among 14-year-old girls to 16% by age 15, and more than doubled again by age 17 (35%; N = 244). Conclusion: Nationally coordinated campaigns with strong policy components must be developed and sustained to prevent skin cancer in a new generation of children and adolescents.

        Sun Magic - Kitchener, Ontario

    On June 4, 2002 I learned that one of my 15 year old acne patients was working at the Sun Magic tanning emporium at the corner of Ottawa and Westmount in Kitchener. I could not believe my ears, and my eyes when I looked at her. She told me that the owners of the franchise had her cleaning the beds for clients, and she was also given a large supply of coupons for free visits to hand out to her friends at school.

        Kokomo's - London, Ontario - May 2002
    I would like to hear from anyone who brought their child to any suntan parlor in Canada. We have had recent experiences with 13 and 14 year old children who were signed up at a Kokomo's suntanning parlour in London, Ontario. At least one of the girls was on potent anti-acne medication and should never have been allowed to tan, even with parental permission. The city of London has done nothing to curb the child abuse that occurs when parents unwittingly take their kids to get ready for Grade 8 graduation, or for the prom. This particular company's web site criticizes efforts by the dermatology community to educate the public about the risks of artificial tanning. It is sinfully lacking in honesty, especially when it concerns the exposure of young children to UVB and UVA.

  • London-Middlesex Health Unit Safety Regulations & Guidelines are now history. Their recommendations for tanning salons provides no enforcement, reviews no training of facility staff, and stipulates no penalties for abuse. In other words, after numerous complaints, major articles in the local media, the Health Unit caves in to the sunbed industry. Who the hell is running the show there? What in the world are they afraid of?

    Sunbeds can be deadly

    From Mole to Melanoma: Skin Cancer Explained Web cast with David J. Leffell, MD of the Yale University School of Medicine and Arielle Kauvar, MD New York University School of Medicine

  • Tanning Devices May Contribute to Incidence of Common Skin Cancers Press release - Journal of the National Cancer Institute
  • New study shows risk of skin cancer more than double - Bred Evenson - National Post A new U.S. study suggests people who use tanning beds face an increased risk of developing two common types of skin cancer, basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma.

    Good Life and Sunbed Promotion

        The Goodlife Fitness chain has a motto:

    To belong where caring individuals are committed to educating you to develop a more energetic lifestyle increasing fitness, longevity and fun.
    Now how does the promotion of sunbeds in their clubs add to fitness, longevity, or fun? Did you know that artificial tanning more than doubles the risk of some common skin cancers? Do they care?

  • Good Life Fitness and others comment on sunbed use by 14 year olds

    Doctor Says Tanning Salons Can Be Health Hazard

    A doctor in southwestern Ontario wants tanning salons regulated more closely. Dr. Terry Polevoy is a pediatrician who runs skin care clinics in London and Kitchener. He wants to see age restrictions on who can use the facilities and better training for the staff.

    The following day two folks rebutted Dr. Polevoy on the CBC.

    On Tuesday, we heard from pediatrician Dr. Terry Polevoy. He'd like to see more regulation of tanning salons.

    Dr. Polevoy would like to see people under 18 prohibited from using them. And he wants better training for staff.

    We wanted to get reaction to his proposals from people in the business.

    Michelle Colwell is the director of national member services for the Goodlife Fitness Club chain. Calla Leitch is the owner of the Tahiti Breezes Sun Salon in London.

    They did agree that they would welcome regulation. The Good Life Fitness empire owns 55 "health" clubs in Canada.

    They all have tanning beds. They say that they don't allow anyone under age 18 to tan. I wonder what it would take for a 16 year old to try? Calla Leitch says she has allowed 14 year old girls to tan before their graduation, but would consider self regulation to limit exposure to those under 18.

    Both of them missed the boat on marketing of the units by industry sales people. Neither of them admitted that their beds have ever injured anyone. That is absolutely ridiculous. I assume that the Good Life Fitness Clubs would have to keep written records of injuries on file as part of their 200 page training manual. A list of their clubs in Canada are found on the "club locator" links. They say that they all have sunbeds, but I don't see any guidelines posted on their web site. But, they do say that they provide a chiropractor or doctor/physiotherapist at some of them. What do these licensed health professionals say about tanning?

    I'd like to ask their president about this notion that tanning under artificial lights at their centres contributes to fitness, energy, lifestyle or fun, but so far he has never responded personally to any communications about this issue.

    David Patchell-Evans the head honcho at GLF did not feel it was necessary to take on this issue on the CBC. I guess he's too busy writing books and organizing the homecoming at UWO.


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