BPHC Awards Funds to Nail Salons to Improve Ventilation

Ana Karina Vivas
(617) 534-2821

BPHC Awards Funds to Nail Salons to Improve Ventilation

Funds awarded will assist salons in building ventilation systems compliant with the BPHC Nail Salon Regulation

BOSTON – Friday, February 2, 2018 – The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) today announced it has awarded $51,000 in financial assistance to 17 nail salons in Boston. The salons will receive $3,000 each to cover some of the costs of installing upgraded ventilation required by the BPHC Nail Salon Regulation to protect their workers and customers from chemicals commonly found in nail products.
“At Boston Public Health Commission, we are committed to creating healthy work environments that better protect their employees and customers from chemical exposure,” said BPHC Executive Director, Monica Valdes Lupi, JD, MPH. “Extended exposure to the more harmful chemicals contained in nail salon products can be a serious health danger and we are delighted to be able to financially support salon owners who are already working to install upgraded ventilation systems in their locations.”

Complying with the ventilation requirements is important to protect salon workers and customers from harmful chemicals contained in nail salon products like nail polish (regular, gel, acrylic, and powder dip) and nail polish remover. Particularly for employees, exposure to these chemicals is associated with poor health outcomes like certain cancers, reproductive effects, asthma, skin sensitivity and damage, and neurological damage.

The review team ranked the salons that did not receive funding in priority order should additional resources become available. The 17 recipients of the funds are:
• Brighton Nails, Brighton
• Bromfield Nails, Downtown
• Daisy’s Nail, Dorchester
• Egleston Nails, Roxbury
• Glitter Nail, Charlestown
• House of Nails, East Boston
• Lee’s Nails, Dorchester
• Lisa Nail Salon, South Boston
• Lovely Nails and Waxing, Roslindale
• Lynn Spa, Dorchester
• Nail Spa By Time, Mission Hill
• Rainbow Nails Spa, Roxbury
• Roxy Nails, Roslindale
• Salon V, West Roxbury
• Secrets Spa and Nail Salon, North End
• Sky Nail & Spa, South Boston
• YES Nails, Brighton

The BPHC Nail Salon Regulation requires that all nail salons permitted by BPHC before October 2013 comply with the ventilation requirements by October 2018. Salons that apply for their first permit after October 2013 must comply with the ventilation requirements before they can receive their permit to operate. The International Mechanical Code (IMC), as incorporated into the Massachusetts Building Code, indicates that all nail salons should have a mechanical ventilation system that includes:
1. Minimum amounts of fresh outdoor air and mechanical exhaust that does not recirculate any air back into the salon or other spaces in the building
2. Source capture ventilation that pulls air directly from the point of service at the manicure table or pedicure chair into the exhaust system
3. Exhaust and supply air produced at specific rates, based on the size of the salon

The 17 awardees were selected among 50 applicants through an extensive and competitive review process. The review team evaluated each application on several criteria including the salon’s readiness and planning for the installation of ventilation, the salon’s permit and enforcement history with BPHC, the type of building in which the salon is located, the number of employees and customer capacity of the salon, and whether the salon participates in the BPHC’s Green & Clean Program.

This is the second round of funding that has been awarded to Boston’s nail salons to support compliance with the ventilation requirements. BPHC previously awarded a total of $18,000 to six nail salons to help them build compliant ventilation systems. An additional $10,000 was awarded to ten salons to help them take the first step towards compliance – hiring an engineer to design their ventilation system.

This funding is being administered by the BPHC’s Safe Shops Program, which was launched 13 years ago to serve auto shops, and which expanded to serve nail salons in 2007 and hair salons in 2016. The Safe Shops Program provides technical assistance and training to small businesses, to help them comply with regulatory requirements and adopt safer work practices. For more information, please visit www.bphc.org/safenails.

About the Boston Public Health Commission

The Boston Public Health Commission, the country’s oldest health department, is an independent public agency providing a wide range of health services and programs. It is governed by a seven-member board of health appointed by the Mayor of Boston.
Public service and access to quality health care are the cornerstones of our mission – to protect, preserve, and promote the health and well-being of all Boston residents, particularly those who are most vulnerable. The Commission’s more than 40 programs are grouped into six bureaus: Child, Adolescent & Family Health; Community Health Initiatives; Homeless Services; Infectious Disease; Recovery Services; and Emergency Medical Services.

Boston Public Health Commission, 1010 Massachusetts Ave, Second Floor, Boston, MA 02118