MONTREAL, June 5, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - It's with great pleasure that the
Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) - Quebec Division welcomes the passage of
Bill 74 that will from now on prohibit the sale of tanning services to
young people under 18 years of age. The CCS would like to congratulate
and thank Health Minister Dr Yves Bolduc for this important step and
all of Quebec's elected leaders who voted unanimously for this new
"Bill 74 is a great victory for public health. We forget too often to
work ahead to stop cancers that can be prevented. The measures
announced this morning will certainly contribute to reducing the rising
incidence of skin cancer," says Suzanne Dubois, Executive Director of
the Canadian Cancer Society - Quebec Division.
With a legislation that is more thorough than Nova Scotia and British
Columbia's, Quebec is showing real leadership on skin cancers. The provisions of this law include:
The prohibition of the sale or offer of tanning services to young people
under 18 years of age, punishable by fines (from $500 to $15,000 for
running the salon and a maximum of $100 for the minor who uses the
The prohibition of any advertising, direct or indirect or false or
misleading (letting them believe, for instance, that tanning beds are
harmless), to promote artificial tanning among minors. This also
applies to the name of the salon.
The obligation to label all advertisements promoting tanning with a
warning about the harmful effects of artificial tanning and a clear
mention of its prohibition for minors. Otherwise, the merchant and the
media running the advertisement are liable to a fine between $500 and
The mandatory declaration of any activity related to the sale of tanning
services to the Enterprise Registrar.
The setting up of business inspection mechanisms by the Ministère de la
Santé (MSSS) and the possibility of allowing a municipality that wishes
to do so to constitute its own team of inspectors.
An obligation to review the law every five years.
More than 1,000 tanning salons are currently active in Quebec and many
are found in unusual places: travel agencies, video clubs, convenience
stores, or laundromats. The legislation provides for the display of
notices and warnings indicating the prohibition of access to minors on
the door of each business. The CCS is also happy that the MSSS has
planned an awareness and information campaign on the dangers of
artificial tanning and the provisions of this law.
During the past year, the CCS collected 60,000 signatures in Quebec to
show the government the popular consent to legislation to protect young
people from the harmful effects of artificial UV rays. The CCS also
received the support of 65 organizations representing more than 600
groups. "It was work on the ground that was done in the four corners of
the province, which managed to bring people together. We are really
proud that our mobilization campaign was heard by elected leaders,"
says Mélanie Champagne, Coordinator, Public Issues, CCS - Quebec
All the same, the CCS would have liked the bill to tackle, as in the
case of smoking, "lifestyle" advertisements. "The industry too often
promotes advertisements that show tanning as something that's necessary
to look good, sexy, and happy. Young people are extremely vulnerable,"
says Ms. Champagne. A paid permit should also be required for
businesses offering tanning services as is the case for the sale of
alcohol or tobacco. The CCS finally recommends, as a future step, to
introduce a 10% tax on the purchase of a tanning session, like in the
A great victory for people personally affected…
"When I started going to the tanning salon at 15, people didn't talk
about any harmful effects, and never about cancer. As a teenager,
nobody ever stopped me from entering a tanning salon. Bill 74 is going
to stop young people from developing a cancer unwittingly and it's
wonderful," says 32-year-old Geneviève Phénix, who survived two melanomas.
"In telling my story, I thought that if my face, my scars, and my
situation touched even a single teenager, the mission would be
accomplished. With the legislation and the awareness campaign, we are
going to reach all of Quebec's youths and the whole population," says 31-year-old Rachelle Pitre, who survived multiple skin cancers.
"The Bill 74 vote literally made me hold my breath, moved me
tremendously, and gave me another occasion to say a big thank you to
the Canadian Cancer Society for all that it has done," Yvon Roy, a father of four who survived a melanoma.
"Thank you on behalf of my daughters who will soon grow up and be
protected by a law that was necessary," says 42-year-old Annie Gloutney, who has a recurrence of melanoma.
Facts on artificial tanning
Skin cancer is the most common cancer in Quebec (from 22,000 to 35,000
cases per year according to sources).
Tanning bed rays are 5 to 15 times stronger than the midday sun.
The risk of developing a melanoma increases by 75% for people who use
tanning beds before the age of 35.
Nearly 250,000, or 16%, of young Quebecers aged between 15 and 29 years
use artificial tanning 11 times a year on average — 160,000 women (22%)
against 90,000 men (11.5%).
Skin cancer treatment is not "benign" and simple: it involves scarring
surgery, various treatments, pain, convalescence, and major changes in
sun-exposure habits (SPF 60 daily required protection, year-round).
The Canadian Cancer Society fights the disease by doing all it can to
prevent cancer, save lives, and support people living with cancer. To
learn more about cancer, visit our website cancer.ca or call our Cancer Information Service, a toll-free and bilingual
service, at 1 888 939-3333.
SOURCE CANADIAN CANCER SOCIETY, QUEBEC DIVISION
For further information:
André Beaulieu, Senior Advisor, Public Relations, CCS - Quebec Division
firstname.lastname@example.org | 514 393-3444