Arizona Appeals Court to Hear Arguments on Spa’s Right to Use Foot-Nibbling Fish
The Arizona Court of Appeals will hear arguments on Wednesday on a spa owner’s right to use imported fish from China that nibble dead skin off feet.
The Goldwater Institute filed the suit on behalf of Cindy Vong, the owner of LaVie Nails and Spa in Gilbert, according to the Phoenix New Times’ Valley Fever blog and the Arizona Republic. Vong was forced to stop using the imported Garra Rufa fish after the state cosmetology board threatened to revoke her license because of the treatment.
The Goldwater Institute claims the board threat violated Vong’s constitutional rights to due process, equal protection and the privileges and immunities afforded to everyone to make a living, according to the group’s website. State regulations, written before the fish treatment became popular, focus on sterilization of tools used to treat skin, “which obviously can’t take place with live fish,” the website says.
The state contends Vong waived her right to sue when she signed an agreement with the cosmetology board and closed her fish spa. The case is Vong v. Aune.