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Body Modification

Tattoos: Safeguarding children and body modification

The Sheffield Safeguarding Children Board (now called The Sheffield Children Safeguarding Partnership SCSP) recognises how popular body modification trends such as piercings and tattoo have become.  Unfortunately, when body modification procedures are not done responsibly, children and young people are at risk of harm.  For this reason, we have been working in partnership with the Sheffield City Council’s Health Protection Service and a range of professionals, drawing on local expertise to develop an awareness campaign, so that children and young people in Sheffield can receive impartial information about piercing and tattoo.  To enable children and young people to make informed decisions about the choices they make, a resource pack has been developed to raise awareness about a range of body modifications, including the risk of ‘Scratchers’ – individuals who do tattoo in an illegal and unregulated way. Over recent years there has been good progress in improving the way some areas of the body modification industry is regulated, but until there are recognised standards in place such as training and qualification, children and young people may be at risk if they do not know the facts.   This resource pack was designed to equip teachers and other professionals to deliver key messages to young people about body modification. 

The materials are available to download below:

There is also information on the Sheffield City Council website

Body Piercing Awareness Raising Campaign for Young People:

Daniel Hindle In December 2002 Daniel Hindle, a 17 year old Sheffield boy, died from septicaemia after visiting a Sheffield studio to have his lip pierced. Since his death, Daniel’s mother Christina Anderson has campaigned to raise awareness of the health risks associated with body piercing and for consistent regulation of the body piercing industry.

Changes to the Law Regulating Body Piercing Outlets With the support of Meg Munn MP the Dan Aid campaign and Meg Munn achieved an amendment to the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982, allowing local authorities to regulate body piercing outlets in their jurisdiction. This by-law (section 120 and Schedule 6 – the regulation of cosmetic piercing and skin-colouring businesses), has been adopted by Sheffield City Council. This means that all local body piercing outlets must be registered and will be subjected to inspections; practitioners must meet basic hygiene standards – failure to do so could result in prosecution.

Sheffield Safeguarding Children Board (SSCB) In September 2006, the SSCB began working in partnership with Dan Aid and set up a task group including representatives from the City Council Health Protection Service, the body piercing industry, PSHE teachers, School Nurses and Meg Munn MP’s office, to produce an impartial publicity campaign.  The aim of the campaign is to ensure that young people, parents and carers are able to make informed choices about body piercing.   The SSCB launched the local ‘Check It Out’ awareness campaign in partnership with Dan Aid and the Health Protection Service  in 2007, with over 70,000 leaflets being distributed via secondary schools, colleges and health centres and in June 2008, representations were made by the SSCB to the Prime Minister suggesting that this important safety information should be made available to all children and young people. The Sheffield Children Safeguarding Partnership continued its work with Dan Aid and other partners to support the development of an educational resource pack, available to schools locally and nationally, via Dan Aid.

You can access the "Check It Out" resources here:

For further information please contact the Licensing Managers: SCSPsafeguardinglicensing@sheffield.gov.uk


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