The Erie County Legislature is voicing support with New York State’s decision to stop asking for medical provider’s orders to allow students to carry sunscreen under particular circumstances at school.
The Legislature unanimously voted to ask New York State to end this practice at its July 12 session; the resolution’s cosponsors are Legislature Majority Leader Thomas J. Mazur (D-Buffalo, Cheektowaga), Legislature Minority John J. Mills (R-Orchard Park) and Legislators Lynne M. Dixon (I-Hamburg), Edward A. Rath III (R-Amherst) and Lynn M. Marinelli (D-Buffalo, Tonawanda).
“I am pleased that the common sense approach to allowing students to use sunscreen to protect themselves from harmful effects of being in the sun’s UV rays, including skin cancer, will now be followed by the New York State Education Department,” Legislator Marinelli said. “Medical advice and medications should be used through the advisement and direction of medical professionals, but we believe that a parent or guardian can make the best decision in a case of a student using sunscreen.”
“By treating sunscreen like a prescription drug, the State Education Department was imposing an unnecessary burden on parents and school officials, while putting our youth at risk. I was pleased to learn the department is doing away with this policy. As parents of school-age children, Legislator Dixon and I first brought forward a resolution asking for the change in policy to keep all kids safe,” said Legislator Rath.
“The decision by the New York State Education Department on schools allowing the use of sunscreen without requiring an order from a medical provider is a smart decision based on proper deliberations,” Majority Leader Mazur, chair of the Health and Human Services Committee, which first approved the resolution, said. “The Education Department consulted with the New York State Department of Health, which was the wise approach to making this decision.”
“I am pleased that the State Education Department made this policy change in time for the school year. Parents shouldn’t have to obtain a doctor’s note to allow our children to apply sunscreen at school. I am in the middle of my back-to-school shopping, which is already time consuming without adding unnecessary forms for something as simple as sunscreen application. This is beneficial to the kids, parents and teachers,” said Legislator Dixon.