State Ban Prevents Use of Welfare For Tattoos, Adult Entertainment

By: Carly Stephenson Email
By: Carly Stephenson Email

HARRISONBURG, Va. -- According to the Washington Post, a plan unanimously approved in both the Virginia House and Senate makes it illegal to use welfare benefits at liquor stores, tattoo parlors or for adult entertainment.

James Warsing, who owns TJ's Dermagraphics said that in his 40 years in business, said he has not seen one person try to use welfare benefits through a benefits card.

Warsing said that to his knowledge that seldom happens.

The TANF program provides eligible families with a cash payment every month to help them with their basic needs.

Warsing said no tattoo shop he knows of would accept cash benefits from the Temporary Assitance for Needy Families program.

Some tattoo parlors do accept credit cards, but he only accepts cash.

Warsing's store also operates as one of three authorized tattoo and piercing schools in Virginia.

When training his students, he makes sure to explain what to do in a situation when a customer comes in and isn't being up front about their background.

"It's a great idea but I do know there are individual tattoo studios that do not accept that at all. When I train students to go out I get them to understand that when dealing with this it's very hard to get your money back," said Warsing.

There is a federal law in place that requires states to prevent unauthorized spending of benefits. That includes casinos, entertainment, alcohol, piercings and tattoos.

This measure in Virginia is simply making it official on the state level.

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