Bill to allow sunscreen at school advances in Rhode Island

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The state House of Representatives has passed a bill to allow children in Rhode Island public schools to bring in sunscreen without a doctor’s note.

The House passed the measure unanimously Wednesday. The Senate is considering identical legislation.

Many school systems categorize sunscreen as an over-the-counter medication requiring special paperwork. Several states have been pushing to loosen restrictions to make it easier for kids to protect themselves from skin cancer.

A similar measure stalled in Rhode Island last year.

Democratic Rep. David Bennett says he’s sponsoring the bill in Rhode Island because the dangers of sun exposure are well-known and kids need protection. Bennett is a nurse.

Under current state law, a student can go to school wearing sunscreen but cannot bring it to school to reapply without special permission.