AUSTRALIA’S high court has ruled that tattooing students can keep their right to wear their tattoos on their face.
The High Court ruled that students could wear their designs on their foreheads after a court ruling last year.
Under the law, students who wear their design on their faces can keep it if they have a medical condition such as cancer or a mental health condition.
But in a scathing judgment on Friday, the court ruled that the law had no relevance to the case of a tattooed 16-year-old from Adelaide.
The teenage girl had been told she could not wear her design on her foreheads because it was a form of self-harm.
In its judgement, the High Court said the law was a way of circumventing the Australian Human Rights Commission’s right to privacy.
“This Court has held that tattooed students have a right to freedom of expression, the freedom to wear and the freedom from bodily harm, provided that they are free from bodily injury and are not committing the offence of tattooing,” it said.
“Tattooing is an expression of identity and, under the law of the State of Victoria, the right to be tattooed has no relevance here.”
In addition, the law has no basis in fact or reason to support its imposition on tattooed pupils.
“Tattoos and face piercing are two of the most popular forms of self harm in Australia.
Students at the University of Tasmania have had to wear the distinctive designs on the sides of their faces since 2014.
Earlier this year, a young woman from Sydney was jailed for the same offence after being caught with a tattoo of her face on her arm.
The girl was 18 when she was tattooed.
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