Once upon an innocent American summer, sun-kissed cheeks were all the rage for lithe, beautiful children freckling in the clean air. But now we know that evil sun rays will kill you — not now, but later, with skin cancer — and that kids should wear sunscreen pretty much any time they go outside for more than five minutes. New York state, though, apparently still has one foot in the 1950s. State law requires that a kid bring in a doctor’s note in order to use sunscreen at school or at summer camps, the Democrat and Chronicle reports.
Steve Hendrickson, recreation supervisor for the town of Victor, said children need a doctor’s note to have sunscreen at his town’s summer camp program, in accordance with state law.
“With short programs, like soccer or whatever, obviously they’re only out there an hour or so, so the parent usually applies it. But for summer camp, where they’re out there for a full day, we need a doctor’s permission and you need it in writing,” Hendrickson said.
The state is supposedly worried about overexposure to sunscreen, but what about overexposure TO THE SUN THAT DEMONSTRABLY GIVES YOU CANCER? Is it even possible to use too much sunscreen, in any kind of real-life situation? Even if they upend a bottle or two over their heads, it shouldn’t be that big of a deal. A full-grown human is supposed to use about a third of the bottle for one outing, supposedly. And honestly, no kid I have ever encountered is conscientious enough about putting on sunscreen that they will put on too much. You should probably need a permission slip to NOT put sunscreen on.
New York's school sunscreen requirements confusing, Democrat and Chronicle.
Get Grist in your inbox