50 years in the future, I’m certain people will look back and wonder what we were thinking about the unchecked proliferation of indoor tanning salons much like we modern, enlightened people look back on those cigarette ads from the 1930s that promoted healthly living.
Finally, someone in a legal position of authority is doing something about it.
The New York Times is reporting that New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on Thursday, April 23, 2015, sued two indoor tanning companies, Portofino Spa and Total Tan, in New York state court.
The separate suits accuse the companies of deceptive trades practices including false advertising and inflating the health benefits of indoor tanning. In particular, Tan Total advertised how indoor tanning can provide healthy amounts of Vitamin D and even went so far as to cite he testimonial of a man who credited the practice with treating his kidney cancer. One claim cited in the lawsuit was that “A tanning unit can produce as much Vitamin D as drinking 100 glasses of milk!”
“Make no mistake about it: There is nothing safe about indoor tanning. The use of ultra-violet devices increases exposure to cancer-causing radiation and puts millions of Americans in serious danger — young adults, in particular,” Schneiderman said.
“Irresponsible businesses that seek to rake in profits by misleading the public about the safety of their services will be held accountable by my office,” he said. “Advertising and marketing cannot be used as a tool to confuse and endanger New York consumers.”
Schneiderman also said he has sent notices to Planet Fitness and Beach Bum Tanning Salons.
A large study last year estimated that indoor tanning contributed to 400,000 cases of skin cancer in the United States every year.
The cases are New York v. Portofino Spas LLC and New York v. Total Tan Inc., case numbers not available, in the Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of New York.