Flagship cosmetics amendment to Health and Care Bill gains cross-party support in the House of Lords

11 January 2022, Ross Matthewman

A key amendment to the Health and Care Bill, aimed at making the cosmetics industry safer in England, has received cross-party support in the House of Lords.

Due to be debated during the Bill’s Committee Stage, the amendment enables the Secretary of State for Health to introduce a licensing scheme for all non-surgical aesthetic procedures and is being sponsored by:

  • Baroness Merron (Labour)
  • Lord Lansley (Conservative)
  • Baroness Brinton (Liberal Democrat)
  • Baroness Finlay (Crossbench)

The amendment mirrors the one drafted by the Chartered institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) and tabled by Caroline Nokes MP in the House of Commons, which went on to be signed by 20 MPs from political parties across the House.

CIEH has been working in coalition with the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH), the Institute of Licensing (IoL), the Joint Council for Cosmetic Practitioners (JCCP), the UK Public Health Network (UKPHN), the Faculty of Public Health (FPH), and Save Face, in calling for better regulation of all cosmetic treatments.

These treatments include common beauty treatments offered on the high street which can cause serious harm to clients if not carried out correctly and in a safe environment. Critically, there is currently no consistent system of regulation in England and no nationally-set training and qualification requirements for practitioners offering these treatments.

Since Caroline Nokes MP’s amendment was first tabled in early September, support for it has grown considerably. As well as public health organisations, the APPG on Beauty, Aesthetics and Wellbeing, the Beauty Industry Group, Tattooing and Piercing Industry Union and the Mental Health Foundation have now also joined this campaign.

There is now wide-reaching cross-industry consensus that a licensing scheme would bring benefits in terms of raising standards, levelling the playing field for practitioners and protecting consumers in this sector.

Debbie Wood, CIEH Executive Director of Membership and External Affairs, said:

“We are delighted that our campaign to improve the safety of the cosmetics industry in England continues to gain momentum.

Ourselves and our coalition of public health organisations have worked tirelessly to keep this issue on the agenda and to build real cross-party support both in the House of Commons and now in the House of Lords.

The need to improve the safety of procedures offered to members of the public in England is clear and it is encouraging to see the wide range of support this campaign is attracting.

We are calling on all members of the House of Lords to back this amendment when it is debated at Committee Stage and for the UK Government to commit to working with us to build this key licensing scheme.” 

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