Thursday, January 8, 2009

Lead Testing on Children's clothing being rethought!!

I was going to post about the craziness that our government is going to supposedly protect our children. There is a law that is going to go into effect on Feb. 10th 2009 that will prohibit any of us from selling clothing from our kids under age 12 without testing for lead. Hello? When was the last time a child was getting lead poisoning from their clothes?
Working at a pediatrician's office, we had mother's coming in all worried last year about the big stink with toys and lead. They had their children tested and guess what...not one of them had elevated levels of lead. Not one!! The media went crazy on it. I am not saying it's a bad thing to get the lead out of the toys now that we know it is in there...but let's not go to extremes.
I asked the Doctor's yesterday in my office if they had heard about this new law passing and none of them had. When I was explaining it, I felt almost foolish because it even sounds ridiculous saying that they are worried about lead in clothing for our kids.
Anyway...I had planned to print the article from the LA Times about it today. When I looked up the article I found a new one that says they are rethinking it. Thank goodness...someone come to your senses!!!
Ok...can you tell I am a little worked up over this.

Regulators rethink rules on testing children's clothing and toys for lead
The Consumer Product Safety Commission gives a preliminary OK to exempt some items from testing after complaints of hardship to thrift stores and sellers of handmade toys.
By Alana Semuels
January 7, 2009
The Consumer Product Safety Commission has given preliminary approval to changes in new lead-testing rules after complaints that the measures could have forced thrift stores and sellers of handmade toys to dispose of merchandise or even go out of business.

If formally adopted, the changes approved on a first vote Tuesday would grant exemptions to last year's Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, which seeks to ensure that products for children do not contain dangerous amounts of lead.

As currently written, the act would require all products aimed at children 12 and under to be tested for lead and phthalates starting Feb. 10. Phthalates are chemicals used to make plastics more pliable.

Large manufacturers and retailers say the cost of testing will not be a burden. But small businesses such as handmade-toy shops and thrift stores say the requirement would force them to spend tens of thousands of dollars to test products such as clothing, in which the threat of lead is almost nonexistent. Many thrift stores said they would be forced to stop selling children's clothing or close altogether.

The commission's two members (a third seat is vacant) voted tentatively to exempt:

* Items with lead parts that a child cannot access;

* Clothing, toys and other goods made of natural materials such as cotton and wood; and

* Electronics that are impossible to make without lead.

The commission also tentatively approved a rule that clarifies how it determines exclusions from the law.

The vote opens up a 30-day public comment period that will begin when notice of the rules are printed in the Federal Register. Interested parties can find out how to submit comments by signing up to receive e-mail from the CPSC at www.cpsc.gov .

No final rules will be approved until after Feb. 10, when the testing rules go into effect.

That means retailers and manufacturers who sell untested children's merchandise would technically be in violation of the new law starting Feb. 10. Whether federal regulators will enforce the rules -- which might entail inspections at thousands of secondhand stores and toy shops across the country -- is another question.

"The CPSC is an agency with limited resources and tremendous responsibility to protect the safety of families," said Scott Wolfson, a CPSC spokesman. "Our focus will be on those areas we can have the biggest impact and address the most dangerous products."

alana.semuels@latimes.com


1 comment:

Stesha said...

That is so insane. Don't you think they would have better things to focus on?