Covid NJ: Tattoo Artists Schedule Educational Protest

By: Tony Rodriguez,

Effective June 22, 2020, New Jersey’s barber shops and salons will be allowed to re-open under The Road Back: Restoring Economic Health Through Public Health Covid-19 pandemic re-opening plan of Governor Phil Murphy. However, New Jersey tattoo salons will not be included.

We are being ignored by the state of New Jersey, and now it is time to give tattooing the educated voice it deserves.

As tattoo artists, we pride ourselves in our profession and take tattooing very seriously. Our lifestyles in tattooing provide us all with a way to feed our families, keep a roof over our heads and conduct other “essential” daily life situations — up to and including paying our share of New Jersey taxes.

Tattooing has always been considered and licensed in much the same way as salons and barber shops, so we should be discussed alongside these businesses. We are held to the highest standards and have the most stringent of oversight. We are required to re-certify in the prevention of disease transmission annually, and have been practicing standard precautions as part of our daily routine for DECADES.

Professional tattooing has a better record of preventing pathogen transmission than professional dentistry.

However, while salons and barbershops are being permitted to re-open on June 22, there is no mention of an exact reopening date for tattoo salons. The exclusion of our trade looks highly prejudicial and appears to be designed to starve us out.

All tattoo artists and studio owners should wear the gloves, face masks, face shields (if available), and disposable sleeve covers which consist of the new PPE attire for the Tattoo Artist during this pandemic era. Also, be sure to maintain six-foot social distance.

We protest the lack of an explanation of why tattoo studios are not being allowed to reopen, and we wish to educate the general public that tattooing is very safe and always has been due to our extensive and annual training with bloodborne pathogens, cross-contamination prevention, first aid, and much more.

Tattooing is sterile and as safe as salons! Tattooing lives matter, too!


tattooWin2020“Tattoo” Tony Rodriguez can be contacted at (732) 872-4092.

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