Thursday, December 11, 2008

FYI

Just another FYI (are you sick of me yet?). Used clothing and toys will also be banned "hazardous material" as of February 10th. (At least, according to the information here.) It will no longer be legal to sell USED children's products as of that date, either. Goodbye Goodwill, Savers, Once Upon a Child, GARAGE SALES, etc. Right now those stores are focusing on the toys, but the reality is that clothing is also affected.

Are you taking this seriously? The "big companies" are not the watchdogs that can change this law. It's us consumers that make up the grassroots. :(

My friend Denise recieved an email response from one of her senators in Ohio, Sherrod Brown. I found the letter belittling and infuriating. The defense of the law under the pretense of caring for children. Here is an excerpt:

"The negative health effects of both these substances have been
extensively documented and studied. Research has found phthalates
exposure linked to decreased fertility capacity in men, premature
birth in women, and asthma symptoms in children. In 2005, a
University of Rochester School of Medicine study found that pregnant
women with high levels of phthalates in their urine were more likely
to give birth to boys with birth defects in their reproductive
systems.

Ingestion and inhalation of lead has long been known to cause damage
to the nervous system, with young children especially vulnerable.
Lead poisoning can cause blood and brain disorders, as well as
gastrointestinal, reproductive, and kidney problems. Although the
number of children with elevated blood lead levels has decreased over
the past several decades, the treatment of lead poisoning accounts
for the vast majority of the $43.4 billion spent on pediatric
environmental disease."

Grrrrrrr.......

9 comments:

  1. Hmmm, wow. I really don't think this law is going to fly. If they start banning all of this stuff, people are going to be screaming from all corners of the country. With current economic and environmental situations, banning the purchase of used products is NOT ok. People *should* be buying used.

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  2. It already DID "fly." It was passed in congress almost unanimously...with only ONE opposition vote. That's the really sad/scary part. :(

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  3. I mean, it probably won't last. Enough people will protest. I printed out all 60-something pages and plan on reading it when I have time.

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  4. Well, I haven't read the huge print-out yet, but in the time I did have, I found this faq page from cpsc.gov:
    http://www.cpsc.gov/ABOUT/Cpsia/faq/108faq.html

    "When does the phthalates ban go into effect for children’s toys and child care articles and does it apply to inventory in existence on February 10, 2009?

    On February 10, 2009, DEHP, DBP, and BBP are permanently banned, and DINP, DIDP, and DnOP are banned on an interim basis, for children’s toys or child care articles as defined in section 108 of the CPSIA. The ban on the six specified phthalates in section 108 of the CPSIA only applies to products that are manufactured on or after February 10, 2009."

    This means that thrift stores, garage sales, resale shops, etc, are all going to go under because of CPSIA. The used products are not being held to the new standard because they were manufactured before that date.

    The link you provide in this post is not of the law itself, but of a discussion board with a handful of moms. In that discussion, they do not cite their source for what they are claiming. I tried doing all kinds of google searches for "CPSIA and used items", "CPSIA thrift stores" and every variation I could think of, and nothing came up. I scanned summaries of the law but found nothing to indicate used items, thrift shops, garage sales, etc. If you have that direct source, I'd love to see it for myself... I shop at thrift stores all the time.

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  5. Typo- I meant, they *aren't* going to go under...

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  6. Danielle is correct as far as the phthalates are concerned. That portion will NOT be retroactive.

    The lead limits WILL be, though. Here is an excerpt from http://www.cpsc.gov/library/foia/advisory/320.pdf

    "However, Congress stated that children's products that did not meet the new lead limits would be treated as "a banned hazardous substance" under the Federal Hazardous Substances Act as of February 10, 2009, and made it unlawful "to sell, offer for sale, manufacture for sale, distribute in commerce, or import into the United States" any banned hazardous substance."

    The problem for retailers or resellers(2nd hand shops)is that without the expensive lead testing, they don't KNOW that the product they are selling isn't illegal.

    Then, it becomes a problem of not knowing when things were manufactured(before or after new law). Particularly for "durable nursery products(cribs, strollers, car seats, furniture, etc)". For instance, I take my stroller into Once Upon a Child. It was manufactured after the deadline, but they don't know that for sure, so they don't know if it meets the new standards or if it is in fact a product that is illegal for sale. I wouldn't be surprised if it gets to the point that you have to have original receipts or instruction manuals with dates or something to prove when it was made. Makes for a bookkeeping NIGHTMARE!

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  7. Thanks, Courtney, for jumping in with the reference!

    The nice thing is that this discussion board that I've been on (fashion incubator) is not just a "handful of moms," but rather a group of professionals that operate businesses, while still considered "small," much larger than Pampered Cheeks. Also these people (men and women) have been in direct contact with the leaders at CPS and with large manufacturers (such as the videos I posted). So while I can't afford to hire a lawyer, I can glean information from this intelligent group of people. So I guess I didn't mean to discredit myself by not citing the law exactly, but I do want to back up the source that I did cite. :)

    I am definitely hoping people protest. It will not be the big companies, though, it must be grassroots people like us consumers.

    My general frustration is when I try to take this outside of the "cloth diapering world" that people say things to me like, "Oh, too bad for your business, I hope it doesn't hurt you to bad." Are you kidding??? I'm trying to say this hurts EVERYONE. If you have a garage sale where you sell children's products and happen to have a bitter neighbor, your neighbor can call CPS and report you--you can be slapped with a felony. "You" the common non-business normal person/consumer. It's SO sad. :(

    I don't even see how in the world they expect to enforce it. I have full hope that the law will be amended. Another thing I'm fighting against is getting out of my small-minded "how this affects me" mentality and trying to look at the big picture. I'm trying not to fish for a solution that will solve only my problems but the other bigger problems there are with this law. An outcome that works just for me is not a good outcome.

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  8. Now see, an outcome that would work for you would work for me too. Then I can still buy PC's. LOL Seriously, I am praying for you each day for guidance through all of this. You keep leaning on Him and He will keep directing your path. Big hugs to you! Heidi :)

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  9. Well, if it is true about thrift stores all going out of business in 2009, then I will be really upset and so will a lot of people. Good thing we were going to take a trip to our favorite one right after Christmas and stock up on tons of stuff.

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