Manufacturers Fight New, Higher Standards for Kid Products

Several manufacturers of children’s products are fighting back against new safety regulations they feel are “unfair” and “erroneous,” reports Andrew Martin in today’s New York Times.

According to the article, the main gripes of product-makers include the introduction of  third-party testing to determine the safety and lead content of children’s products, as well as a new online database from the Consumer Product Safety Commission that would allow the public to search for injury reports on popular (and regularly recalled) products like cribs and strollers

Interestingly enough, the debate has now gone political—with a number of House Republicans siding with the manufacturers.

The Times reports: Representative Mike Pompeo, a Republican from Kansas, has succeeded in passing an amendment to an appropriations bill to strip financing for the consumer products database, arguing that the idea needed to be tweaked to protect manufacturers from bogus complaints and lawsuits. “I’m an engineer. I love data. But I know what people put online,” Mr. Pompeo said at a meeting of the House subcommittee on commerce, manufacturing and trade last week.

Representative Mary Bono Mack, a Republican from California echoed Pompeo’s sentiments.“Let’s focus more on real dangers to our children,” she said, at the subcommittee hearing, “instead of perceived ones.”

At this point it’s difficult to tell whether or not House members will succeed in cutting the budget for the CPSC’s database or relaxing consumer product regulations. As the Times points out, Democrats currently retain the majority in the Senate and are clearly determined to block such measures.

What’s your take on the debate? Do you think a line needs to be drawn on how safe is safe enough—or feel better, as a consumer, knowing that the most stringent regulations are in place when it comes to the safety of your child’s toys and products?

Be sure to keep up with the very latest on recalls with our helpful Recall Finder on

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  1. by Evolution Diapers

    On February 22, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    This is true. There are no clear standards set for manufacturers only a hazey view of what they are trying to call safety. How can this be for children’s safety when Mattel is not required to comply and they are the largest manufacturer of toys in the USA?

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