The New York State Senate passed legislation (S.7446, sponsor Joe Robach) which would require parent or guardian consent for unemancipated persons who wish to receive body piercings. This would be for piercing of any part of the body, other than the ears.

“I think this will be very consistent with existing law, and something that will be supported by parents across the state.  As body piercings can often result in infection and a permanent scar, it seems logical that parents should be involved in the decision,” said Senator Joe Robach.

Of the people with body piercings, more than a third received their first piercing before the age of 18. Body piercings are well-documented to have possible adverse health effects. Some studies have shown complications arising in 25% of all cases. These complications include allergic reactions, skin infections, scarring, and general discomfort.

Previously, there was no state law establishing any age restrictions on body piercing. While some studios may require written consent before piercing persons under the age 18, many others do not.  When enacted, this law will be consistent with New York’s laws related to tattooing.  Currently, New York residents need to be 18 to be tattooed.
Joe Robach continued “Under current law, any unemancipated person could come home with a body piercing.  This bill would help educate both parents and children of the potential risks of piercings and help them make informed decisions together.”

This bill passed the Assembly last week.  The bill will be returned to the Assembly and delivered to the Governor for his approval.