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New Tattoo Laws To Keep Scratchers Off Michigan Streets

December 7th, 2008 by

cjour @ flickrThe county of Macomb in Michigan is working on a new body of art ordinance this month. The ordinance is 24 pages in length and covers everything from artist regulations to shop rules, and the hopes is to reduce the unlicensed tattoos showing up in the state. The health department of Michigan has noticed an increase in tattoos done by non-professional tattoo artists recently and have a growing concern of the health risks involved in getting a tattoo outside of a professional tattoo shop.

There are a lot of risks that run with non-licensed artists, known as scratchers. Often these tattoos are performed at house parties, in basements, or even at flea markets. In more cases then not, the tattoos are done with non-sterilized materials that can be of poor quality. They also run the risk of needle sharing, which can bring a whole host of diseases, infections and other health concerns. Aside from the health concerns, these free range tattoos can often be of poor quality.

Which is why the Michigan Department of Health developed the new Body Art Ordinance. This ordinance will require that all tattoo shops carry both a license and a permit that will cost $100 a year. In addition, all tattoo artists must be a minimal age of 17 and accompanied by an artist over the age of 18. These artists must also be trained in basic emergency procedures, such as CPR.

The Michigan Department of Health hopes the new ordinance will make it harder for the scratchers to give underground tattoos, however, they realize the ordinance alone will not completely remove the unlicensed tattoos being given in the state. There is no word yet whether the ordinance will be partnered with increased laws related to tattoos. However, this may be the extra step needed to get the people off the streets and in to the tattoo shops.

The ordinance went to it’s first round of voting on December 4th, 2008. Putting the new ordinance in effect may be a lengthy process as it is a longer set of guidelines, and a relatively new subject for the city of Michigan.

To read more about the ordinance, see the Detroit News.

5 Responses

  1. legendary tattoo studio

    so man people are missing the mark by so damn far it embarrassing..criminals dont give a damn about a new law .thatys why there called “CRIMINALS”..just like underground scrathers dont care ABOUT ABOUT NEW TATTOO LAWS thats why there called SCRATHERS..!!!!!! CRACK DOWN ON ILLEGAL SCRATHERS DOESNT MEAN ..GIVE THE LEGAL STUDIOS MORE AND MORE AND MORE NEW LAWS ..WHILE SCRATCHERS ARE STILL SCRATCHING ..IT REALLY FRUSTRASTES ME TO CONSTANTLY GET INSPECTED WHILE THE SCRATHER UP THE BLOCK STILL DOES WHAT HE WANTS WHEN HE WANTS..WITH NO CONSEQUENCE!!

  2. Fecal

    First of all, I hope “legendary Tattoo” is better at tattoos than he is spelling. Secondly, I am a great artist and never given the chance to get trained. Tattoo artist would steal my art and decide not to train, was ran out of shops for asking questions and so on and so on. So I got myself guns and began going up my arm, friends arms, and began strangers. I never reuse fucking shit, and never scar, and do not OVER CHARGE!!!!! I am finally getting reconishion and getting a chance, and when I get licensed, watch the fuck out, and you know who I am talking too!!!

  3. Irene

    I received an email about the new Michigan tattoo laws. They said it was illegal to tattoo yourself. So far I can’t find where in the law it says that. I agree with the person above. I noticed in the laws that I read it says you must have a license, nowhere it says that you must have tattooed for so many years. So I guess anyone can get a license and start tattoooing, even if they have never tattooed before. You have good and bad licensed tattoo artist. Probably the same for unlicensed artist. too.

  4. Val

    Hey Fecal good for u, i am starting out the same and everyone i went to to try and get a leg up have been total assholes to me! We need more down to earth artists like us. I just dont know what i have to do to become legal, or if i even have too, the michigan law is so damn confusing that i have no clue on what to make of it, do i have to be licensed do i have to work in a shop, do i just need my blood path. cert? what i dont understand! soooo frustrated right now!!!! can anyone help me on this law mess and tell me if i can just tatto

  5. Mexico

    yo how much time do u get if u get caught tattin at ur own house like fines or do u get actual time or what????

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