Calls for curb on sunbeds to protect young

Last updated at 08:39 12 May 2006

More than 100 MPs are calling on the Government to restrict the use of unstaffed coin-operated tanning machines, which can be used by schoolchildren.

The machines are operated entirely by the customer and are often unstaffed to save costs, giving rise to fears that more and more children are using them in their lunch hour and after school.

The move is prompted by a rise in the number of skin cancer victims - malignant melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, is now twice as common in young people as it was 20 years ago.

A Commons motion tabled by Labour's Sian James (Swansea E) notes that some operators charge as little as 25p per minute for a tanning session and the lack of staff means that access is unrestricted.

It calls on the Government to restrict the use of the machines and for operators of unstaffed salons to be prosecuted if children under 16 are found to be using them.

The motion adds that some of the salons rely on posters to provide awareness of the dangers to exposure to UV rays rather than advice from a staff member.

So far 105 MPs have signed the motion.

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