Calif. teens banned from using tanning bed

Oct. 11, 2011 at 1:48 AM
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RICHMOND, Va., Oct. 11 (UPI) -- An international foundation on melanoma research is applauding California Gov. Jerry Brown for signing legislation banning use of indoor tanning beds by minors.

Valerie Guild, president and founder of AIM at Melanoma -- whose daughter died of melanoma at age 26 -- praised Brown's decision to break new ground by signing SB 746 into law, noting that those who use tanning beds before age 20 double their risk of developing melanoma. The law goes into effect in January.

Melanoma is the top cancer killer of women ages 25-30 and second only to breast cancer in women ages 30-34, Guild said.

"This is a major victory in the fight against melanoma. It is alarming that so many young women are unnecessarily developing melanoma because of a recreational activity," Guild said in a statement. "We applaud Gov. Brown for taking advantage of this unique opportunity to blaze a trail by banning minors from using tanning beds. We thank him for joining our fight against this preventable killer."

More than 8,000 new cases of melanoma are expected to be diagnosed in California in 2011 and almost 28 million people use tanning beds in the United States annually, of which 2.3 million are teens, Guild said.

Brown's signature makes the Golden State the first in the nation with such a ban, Guild said.

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