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New Belgian rules for body piercing

Published on 10/06/2004

10 June 2004

BRUSSELS – The Belgian health minister is planning to introduce new rules to control the practices of body piercing and tattooing, it was reported on Thursday.

La Derniere Heure newspaper said the new legislation is designed to reduce the health risks linked to piercing and tatooing and should come into effect in September.

Under the new rules, tattoos would be banned for anyone under 18 as would pierced nipples or genitals.

Sixteen to 18 year olds could have other parts of their bodies pierced provided they had clearly verifiable permission from a parent or guardian.

Cildren under 16 would be banned from having any sort of piercing.

The only exception to this rule would be for pierced ears in cases where a parent or guardian had given their permission.

The tattooing and piercing professions would also have to face tough new rules if the legislation entered into force as planned.

Anyone wishing to work in the industry would have to get special permission from the Belgian health ministry.

Premises would have to be kept meticulously clean and piercing equipment would have to be sterilised or thrown away after each use.

Poorly carried out piercings can spread a number of very serious diseases, including hepatitis B and HIV.

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject: Belgian news