NORTH CAROLINA -

Health advocates said they want the North Carolina Senate to ban people younger than 18 from using tanning beds.

House Bill 18 passed in March of last year with strong bipartisan support of 94 to 22. But it failed when lawmakers argued that the link between ultraviolet rays and skin cancer is unproven.

Now groups like the American Suntanning Association are lending their support to try and help lawmakers get this bill to the top.

But with the bill getting growing support has people like Amie Littleton upset.

"I think having to wait to go to the tanning bed when you're 18 is absolutely ridiculous," she explained.

The current law does not allow anyone 13 or younger to use a tanning bed, unless they have a written prescription from a doctor.

"Every year they keep trying to stop the tanning industry," said Kathy Regalmuto, owner of Sunless Expressions.

Regalmuto said people 14 to 17 have to have a parent or legal guardian sign a consent form before they are allowed to tan.

Although, this proposed law would stop that all together.

"If the parents says it's ok, if they give permission, I don't understand why there has to be a bill," Regalmuto said.

The American Suntanning Association said on Tuesday they support legislation to change this law.

NewsChannel 12 reached out to the associations Group Advisor Joe Levy who said:

"We have supported similar bans in 11 other states this year. It’s time for all parties to work together to deliver clear messages to the public."

The North Carolina Dermatology Association said more than a quarter of 17-year-olds in the U.S. have used indoor tanning at least once. Also, more than 1,400 tanning beds are registered in North Carolina.