The Washington D.C. Health Department has proposed regulations that mandate a 24-hour waiting period for anyone seeking a tattoo.
Recently released, the 66-pages of draft regulations “ensure that no tattoo artist applies any tattoo to a customer until after twenty-four (24) hours have passed since the customer first requested the tattoo.” It additionally bars businesses from accepting deposits for future work.
Several business owners have expressed serious concern over the proposed regulations. One tattoo shop owner told reporters that the provisions are an “attempt to put us out of business.” Another stated that “the art of tattooing is protected under the First Amendment … and constraints on customers’ freedom to decide how and when to exercise that right could be constitutionally suspect.”
A spokesperson for the Health Department commented to the press that the regulations are intended to protect the public from “serious health risks.” She added, “We’re making sure when that decision is made that you’re in the right frame of mind, and you don’t wake up in the morning … saying, ‘Oh my God, what happened?’”