Saturday, January 24, 2009

Repeal or Reform CSPIA HR4040

Reprinted from Jan 18, 2008

If you manufacture, wholesale, retail, sell or buy products, either new or used, for use by children you will be impacted by The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CSPIA), the first stage of which will go into effect Feb. 10.

The law, aimed at keeping lead containing merchandise away from children, mandates that all products sold for those age 12 and younger -- including but not limited to clothing, toys, books, sporting equipment, bikes, etc. -- be tested for lead and phthalates, which are chemicals used to make plastics more pliable. Those that haven't been tested will be considered hazardous, regardless of whether they actually contain lead.

Makers of children's goods cannot rely on materials known to be safe, even if the manufacturer of materials and supplies has already tested and certified them as being lead free. Instead they must put a sample from each lot of goods (each model, each size, each color....) through testing after complete assembly, and the testing must be applied to each component. Testing is costly and for each component could cost upwards of $100.00. For items comprised of many components the tab for testing could easily reach into the thousands of dollars.

This law will certainly affect large manufacturers, but small businesses and micro businesses less able to absorb the costs of testing, will be even harder hit. Many small producers who have prided themselves on providing safe products for children fear for their business survival and in many cases their very livelihood.

In recent weeks protests have begun to mount, alarms have been raised at hundreds of blogs, forums and within business groups, including ours, Women Take Wing! We urge you to educate yourself about the CSPIA, and hope you will join us in a call to our elected officials to repeal or at the least reform this poorly written and broad reaching piece of legislation.To date, few major media sources have picked up this story. One of the best was written by Walter Olson and published on January 16 by . Please write and/or email your local television stations asking for them to give airtime to this issue. Email your congressperson and submit your comments to the Consumer Product Safety Commission which is charged with enforcing the CSPIA. Take the time to sign one of the many online petitions. Together we can make a difference.For additional information:

or just do an internet search on "CSPIA" to find many articles and blog entries.Online petitions (a few): Action Lawsuit: submit a question to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, click here.To submit comments regarding mandatory third-party testing, click here.

1 comment:

D Louise said...

Talk about "The Law of Unintended Consequences!" Rushing in with what is a basically good idea has ended up hurting so many small businesses!