Long Title An Act to reform the law relating to children; to provide for local authority services for children in need and others; to amend the law with respect to children’s homes, community homes, voluntary homes and voluntary organisations; to make provision with respect to fostering, child minding and day care for young children and adoption; and for connected purposes.
Age At this current time, there are no laws passed on a minimum age for a chid to receive any beauty treatments. If you are practicing on a child under the age of 16 you need to ensure that you are in accordance with the Government Guidelines and Acts concerning welfare of children.
Consent You do need the child’s consent. It is important to establish that the treatment is on a voluntary basis and that they haven’t been pushed in to making the decision by an over- bearing guardian. If they express any indication that they do not want the treatment then do not, under any circumstances go ahead. The law does not state that you need written consent. If the child is unable to give consent then consent can be given by a parent or guardian. It is essential to have parental consent.
Chaperoning If you have a client under the age of 16 then you must never be alone with them. You must ensure that they are accompanied by an adult so that they are there to witness all of the treatment. The adult doesn’t have to be the parent of the child, just a responsible adult. If you are in a public area with lots of people, like a salon, then you do not need a personal chaperone. You just need to tell someone within close proximity to you that you are working on a minor and that you would like them to ‘witness’ the work you are carrying out.
Modification All therapists need to bear in mind that if you are working on a child they are likely to be more sensitive and you will therefore need to modify the treatment that they require. There are many aspects to take in to account, i.e. age, medical history, physical and mental maturity and experience of the therapist. You should stay on the safe side and opt for a gentler treatment than you think. You should also steer clear of treatment that can be counted as ‘invasive’ such as areas like the groin, buttocks an chest. Patch tests should also be issued to a younger client to test out any products that y might use, like oils, hair dye and skni products.
Legalities If you feel that the treatment is inappropriate for the child then you are not obligated to do it, even if the parent is present and consents. It is your choice and your career on the line. If the child discloses that they have been abuse or are being abused then it is your duty to report this to the appropriate authorities. Steer clear of letting the child play-fight with you or hug you and only use physical contact if necessary for the treatment.