Here we go again … another interesting development in the ongoing battle between the tanning industry and the media, legislators, regulators, lobbyists, dermatological societies and medical institutions.
Now, through the persuasive tactics of the above-mentioned, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) just closed the period for submission of public comment on how to lower the maximum exposures to ultraviolet light and to further regulate our industry to the point of extinction. Can hardly wait to see what they come up with.
We now have created too many adversaries to fight off from a legislative perspective. Without an M.D. after each of our names, members of the tanning industry who try to combat the medical institutions are akin to an ant under the foot of a giant. Then we have the media, who by exploiting ridiculous stories such as New Jersey’s “Tan Mom,” continue their agenda to demonize and vilify tanning salon operators as “Bad Guys.”
I can’t beg the icons of this industry enough to steer clear of making health claims about indoor tanning that are substantiated with limited authority. Even if a study has positive content, when salon operators use that information to promote our industry, our adversaries will produce five studies to dispute it. We can’t continue picking fights in this arena without attracting more regulatory and fact-finding institutions ready to weigh in on our position.
We have to find a happy medium. Our opponents must be convinced that we are just here to provide patrons of our salons with a cosmetic tan, and nothing more. Salon operators are not trying to cure vitamin D deficiency, despite the fact that there are obvious benefits from vitamin D. Maybe, if we find a happy medium now, and professionalize ourselves, our staff and our industry for the future, we could collaborate with the medical institutions. They could send their vitamin D-deficient patients to our salons? Perhaps we could even fill a prescription? WE MUST FIND COMMON GROUND!
Professionalizing our industry is the only way out of this fine mess.
joined Sun is Life in January, 2013. As the educational program’s director, Brown brought a vast wealth of academic, industrial and political experience to his position. His goal was to help spread the program’s message of moderate tanning and salon operator professionalism, a standpoint that he – like ist Magazine – believes the indoor tanning industry must embrace in order to remain strong.
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