The State Government will push ahead with new laws requiring tattoo artists to certify that ink used on customers is not carcinogenic.

A plan to amend the Poisons Act relating to the use of tattoo ink, requiring suppliers to certify that pigment does not contain substances that could be harmful to health, is expected to go before Queensland Parliament next week.

The change would force artists to obtain a certificate stating the results of an analysis of substances contained in the tattoo ink, confirming it does not contain high arsenic levels.

The amendment, set to be introduced as part of the government's Debt Reduction and Savings Bill, has been welcomed by the Australian Medical Association and health stakeholders.

Queensland Health Prevention Acting Deputy Director-General Keith McNeil told parliament's Economics and Governance Committee the compliance analysis certificate would regulate what goes into tattoo inks.

Professor McNeil said tattoo ink usually consists of dye and pigment elements which could be associated with health risks.

If the wrong dyes are used, those chemicals that are broken down can be carcinogenic.

Similarly, some of the pigments contain heavy metals, for instance cadmium or lead, which are also carcinogenic.

However, the plan has been criticised by the tattoo industry for placing an "unnecessary and unfair burden on suppliers".

Professional Tattooing Association of Australia Treasurer Chris Llewellyn said tattooists "only buy reputable brands from established, reliable supply companies".

Queensland Treasury said the amendments were part of a "proactive approach" to addressing risks.

Originally published as Carcinogenic tattoo ink laws to go before Parliament



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