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Hygiene warning over illegal tattoo parlours
ENVIRONMENTAL health officers are urging tattoo-minded people to make sure they see the most important picture of all before they agree to have work started – the tattooists' ID certificate confirming their status.
Officers have recently visited all registered premises across Wirral and issued tattooists with photo identification so visitors can be satisfied they conform to the necessary safety and hygiene standards.
Action was taken after they had become aware of an emerging problem with illegal tattoo artists working from unregistered premises - often their own homes.
If visiting unregistered tattooists, customers can have no guarantee that the equipment being used to do the tattoo is safe and hygienic.
They leave themselves at risk of contracting serious illnesses, such as hepatitis, septicaemia or HIV.
The campaign is backed by a hard-hitting poster asking people to consider the real cost of using a cheaper unregistered tattoo artist.
Councillor Brian Kenny, Wirral Council's cabinet member for environment and sustainability, said: "Having tattoos done remains extremely popular but the nature of how the work is carried out means it is not without risk.
"This is why the law requires premises to be licensed.
"Illegal tattooists operating from unregistered premises can offer no proof that they are committed to safe and hygienic practice.
"You might save a few quid on the cost of having the work done, but what price would you put on your health?"