Regulation of artificial tanning services for young people - Canadian Cancer Society petition now online

18 August 2011

Montreal -

Since regulating tanning industry practices will help reduce the number of cases of skin cancer, the Canadian Cancer Society – Québec Division (CCS) is urging the government to prohibit the sale and promotion of artificial tanning to minors and to set up a register of all businesses offering such services. Fifty thousand people have already expressed support for the requests of the CCS by signing the paper-format petition throughout Québec.

The CCS is now appealing to the public to join in its efforts to combat the ever-rising numbers of cases of skin cancer by signing the online petition. Sponsored by the Liberal member for Hull, Ms. Maryse Gaudreault, the electronic petition can now be signed on the National Assembly website.

Considerable support

  • Many elected officials have signed the petition, including the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Pierre Corbeil.
  • On August 14, the Youth Commission of the Liberal Party unanimously passed a motion demanding the prohibition of tanning salons for youths under the age of 18.
  • The CCS met with some fifty members to inform them of the results of this broad-based campaign.

“Members and citizens alike have been very enthusiastic and receptive to our requests. A print petition bearing 50,000 names speaks volumes! The launch of the electronic petition will enable us to promote the dossier more widely”, said Mélanie Champagne, Policy Analyst in charge of the UV campaign at the CCS.

The CCS is very concerned that, year after year, skin cancer is the most rapidly spreading form of cancer among young people. “We know that three-quarters of the cases of melanoma diagnosed in 18-29 year-olds among clients of tanning salons are attributable to exposure to artificial UV. Many of these melanomas occur on breasts and buttocks, areas that are not usually exposed to the sun. Action is urgently needed,” said André Beaulieu, Interim Director, CCS Public Affairs.

Go to to sign the petition.

The facts

  • Tanning equipment is categorized as a major cause of cancer in humans, on an equal footing with cigarettes and asbestos.
  • Exposure to artificial tanning before the age of 35 increases the risk of developing a melanoma, the most severe and deadly type of skin cancer, by 75%.
  • Since 1990, cases of melanoma have more than doubled.
  • Many countries prohibit the sale of artificial tanning services to minors. In Canada, Nova Scotia does so, as does the Capital Regional District of Victoria, in British Columbia.
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends prohibiting the sale of artificial tanning services to people below 18 years of age.



Mélanie Champagne
Policy Analyst, Public Affairs, Canadian Cancer Society – Québec Division
514-255-5151, ext. 2404

The Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) is the only national charity that supports Canadians with all cancers in communities across the country. No other organization does what we do; we are the voice for Canadians who care about cancer. We fund groundbreaking research, provide a support system for all those affected by cancer and advocate to governments for important social change.

Help us make a difference. Call 1-888-939-3333 or visit today.

For more information, please contact:

André Beaulieu

Spokesperson and Senior Advisor, Public Relations

Canadian Cancer Society

Quebec Division

Phone: (514) 393-3444