A number of suggestions for improvements to the current Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme have been made which we are now considering.
These include the addition of a Rating Number 5 and the potential inclusion of Piercers in the Scheme.
We will be considering these and any other suggestions made at a meeting of the Scheme Management Group early in 2017. If you have any suggestions for the improvement of the Scheme please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org so that they can be included in the discussions.
Hartlepool Borough Council Anti Scratcher Campaign
Hartlepool Borough Council have been carrying out awareness work with their College and Sixth Form College relating to the dangers around 'scratchers' and illegal tattooing. They held a meeting with the College Principal to discuss the issues and it was decided that students should design a series of campaigns to be used on social media to raise awareness among young people of the dangers associated with illegal tattooing and to raise the profile of the Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme. The Council recruited one of their tattoo artists to help and together they gave a presentation to the students about the Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme and what they wanted the campaigns to cover. Students were given four weeks to design campaigns which they then had to present to Pat Crowe, Hartlepool Borough Council and the tattoo artists from a local studio. It was narrowed down to five campaigns to run throughout 2017. The first of which is just being launched by the press office on the Council's Facebook and Twitter pages. The first designs have been produced by Paige Pagan from HCFE Creative's FDA Design for the Creative Industries course at Hartlepool College.
Acting on a tip off Middlesex-London Health Unit officials have raised a Shelbourne Street home in the Glen Cairn area, and found a resident providing tattoo services without being registered and 'without having adequate infection prevention and control measures in place'. Officials from the unit are cautioning Londoners about some of the risks associated with having tattoos from unlicensed premises. Although such instances are rare officials from MLHU said that "unsafe practices may result in the transmission of blood-borne infections such as HIV, hepatitis B and C as well as common skin infections" A MLHU spokesperson said " While getting body art is a personal decision, anyone considering getting a tattoo has to make sure that their health and safety aren't at risk when they get inked. Home based tattoo services advertised on social media or classified ad websites such as Kijiji and Craigslist are not typically inspected by the Health Unit or licensed by the City of London. Therefore infection control measures cannot be ensured as there can be no way of determining if minimum safety standards are being met" The Health Unit is in the preliminary stages of its investigation, and is seeking to assess whether any infectious transmissions could have taken place due to equipment or hygiene issues. The operator of the Shelbourne business was issued with a Cease and Desist notice by the Health Unit, requiring that the business cease operating and does not start up again. Individual who do not comply with the requirements of a Cease and Desist Notice can be liable to financial penalties.
Local Authorities take action to prevent illegal tattooing - via Daily Mail
Illegal tattoo artists selling designs at pocket money prices are putting children at risk of contracting hepatitis and HIV, council bosses have warned.
Unlicensed tattooists, known as scratchers, use cheap equipment to offer tattoos inked in kitchens and gardens.
They often target children and adults with their low prices, council leaders from the Local Government Association said.
Experts warn the equipment which is often bought online is often dirty and unsterilized, putting people at risk of virus and infections.
Fuelled by celebrity culture, tattoos are booming in popularity. One in three people aged 25 to 34 now have a tattoo, and more than 1,500 licensed parlours are currently in operation.
Illegal tattooists are riding the wave of this boom, council officers said.
Durham County Council recently prosecuted two scratchers after officers raided three homes as part of its Catch a Scratcher campaign.A further man accepted a caution and two other illegal operators voluntarily surrendering their equipment.
During the raids, officers seized more than 30 bags of equipment including 15 tattoo machines and hundreds of needles, many of which were out of date.
Wrexham County Borough Council also prosecuted a man for illegally tattooing children in his home at pocket money prices to children.
Peterborough City Council recently secured its first jail sentence against an illegal tattooist who was jailed for 16 weeks and ordered to pay costs of £260 after ignoring warnings from the council to register his home-based parlour.
The man also did not have adequate infection procedures in place, putting his clients at risk of infection.
Councillor Morris Bright, vice chairman of the LGAs Safer and Stronger Communities Board, said: Illegal tattooists operating under the radar pose a real danger to peoples health as they often have low hygiene standards which could put your life at risk.Experts are also worried about DIY tattoo kits available online.
Although you have to be 18 to have a tattoo or tattoo someone else, it is not illegal to tattoo yourself.
Online retailers are being urged to provide warnings to children on the dangers of using DIY tattoo kits which can be bought for less than £25.
Councillor Bright said: This issue is becoming more rife as people set up businesses from home and tattoo equipment is becoming more widely available and cheaper on the internet.
We are urging young people under 18 and adults not to visit illegal tattooists or tattoo their friends or themselves using cheap tattoo equipment obtained online because the health risks are too great and there may be safeguarding concerns about the premises they are visiting.
Prospective tattooists should register with their local council who can provide advice on legal requirements and appropriate hygiene practices.
Anyone getting a tattoo should make sure they check both the premises and tattooist is registered.
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They can use unsterilized equipment that seriously increases the risk of spreading diseases such as hepatitis or HIV, and causing permanent ugly scarring.
Unregulated tattooists are also associated with bad tattoos, which require expensive work to put right, and because theyve been done illegally, you wont have normal customers rights.
These unregistered tattooists are undermining legitimate businesses and are often willing to illegally tattoo children by tempting them with pocket money prices, which can cause damage that lasts a lifetime.
Derbyshire Councils join the Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme
We are delighted that the councils in Derbyshire have all joined the Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme, with Derbyshire County Council acting as the administrator. Julie Barratt, Director of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health Wales, welcomed the councils to the scheme " We are very pleased that all of the councils in Derbyshire have joined the THRS. We know that it raises the profile of good hygiene standards and practices , and encourages tattoo studio owners to make improvements. It also informs the public about hygiene standards, something they would not be able to ascertain for themselves. I very much hope that the councils in Derbyshire find joining the scheme to be a positive step for public health and for the businesses that take part' The press release can be found here: https://t.co/FPZn7W7oLn
First London Borough joins the Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme
LB Tower Hamlets have become the first council in London to join the Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme, rating their first tattoo studio in July 2016. Julie Barratt, Director of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, Wales commented "Its is great to see LB Tower Hamlets join the scheme. I hope that other London councils will follow their lead raising the profile of the scheme as well as raising standards and protecting public health across London" . The first premises in London to be rated was Londoninkaholics, which achieved a rating of 4. Top marks for the first studio to take part !