Matthew Crowe's tattoo, the image from The Coast's Halifax Ink issue cover.
Legislation proposed by the province today, November 23, will regulate and provide technical guidelines to tattoo artists and piercers.
The Body Art Act would require establishments that offer body art services to meet standards for infection control and disease transmission.
"Government recognizes the growing demand for body art services in the province, but we also recognize the risk to health that these services pose to customers and employees," said Maureen MacDonald, minister of health and wellness, in a press release. "Regulating the body art industry will help mitigate the risk to health, and protect Nova Scotians from the risk of disease."
As tattooing and body modification is crossing into the cultural mainstream---see our November 17 cover store and feature spread on the subject---these kinds of regulations should help protect the inked public from diseases such as Hepatitis C.
Though it's not clear when these changes will happen, tattoo artists can expect the regulations and measures to be phased in, to allow them time to adjust. And we hope that for most of the operations in the HRM, not a lot of adjustments to their business and operational practices will be necessary.