Michigan lawmakers look to keep parents from getting tattoos for kids

Michigan parents can get their child tattoos if they want to, but that could soon change

By Mara MacDonald - Reporter

LIVONIA, Mich. - Right now any Michigan parent could opt to tattoo their child, and while it certainly isn't common, it raised the eyebrows of state legislators.

"Social workers are seeing more and more cases of children and toddlers that are coming that have been tattooed and in many cases tattooed with symbols that they believe are gang symbols," said state Senator Glenn Anderson (D-Westland).

Anderson is moving a bill that would make ink a no-no for any child under the age of 16. If 16, the teen would need parental permission to go ahead and get the tattoo.

Michael Mikho, owner of Empire Tattoo in Redford Township, says it happens. They have had parents come in with small children asking to tattoo them. Mikho follows Wayne County regulations which already prohibit that, but he wouldn't do it even if those regulations weren't in place.

"Our own personal preference is to not tattoo anybody under 16. We feel like they're not old enough to make the decision," he said.

Anderson says so far 18 states have laws in place prohibiting tattooing minors, and so far his bill has bi-partisan support.

He expects it will make it through the state legislature.

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