If you've been following the CPSIA news closely, as I have, then you're probably aware of the threat facing makers of handmade children's products due to the unintended consequences of the legislation meant to protect our children from lead and other dangers. I'm happy to report that our voices are being heard!
On Wednesday, the Committee on Energy and Commerce sent a letter to its chairman, Henry Waxman, urging that the effective date of the legislation (February 10) be postponed until a hearing can be conducted so that those involved in the decision making process can be better informed of the serious side effects of the CPSIA.
From the letter:
"...it is becoming clear that, without the rapid application of some common sense, the new law also holds potential to impose vast economic hardship without actually protecting anyone."
"Many involved in CPSIA's creation were passionate to improve the safety of our children's products, but surely no one expected or wanted to drive thousands of home-based and small businesses out of operation and turn thousands of Americans into surprise victims of a brutal recession. For example, it seems obvious to us that the hand-knitted sweaters and homemade hair bows sold by artisans on eBay are highly unlikely to endanger children's health."
"The situation is urgent. On February 10, in less than three weeks, these tiny producers will be out of business."
"Meanwhile, there is no evidence that these micro-producers are doing anything wrong or endangering anyone, and we believe there is no reason for them to suffer a devastating economic blow simply because their government cannot find a way to help in time."
You may read the letter for yourself as a pdf file here.
To keep yourself informed of the latest CPSIA developments, and to find out how you can help, visit the discussion on Change.org, where the issue was voted one of the Top Ten Ideas for Change in America.
(images from Better Living magazine, June 1954)