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Washington State Compiling List Of Chemicals Most Toxic To Children

Posted by Chrissie Cole
Thursday, September 17, 2009 11:19 AM EST
Category: Protecting Your Family
Tags: Major Medical, Toxic Chemicals, Consumer Safety, Phthalates, Children’s Safe Product Act, BPA


IMAGE SOURCE: The Children's Safe Product Act of 2008

Washington became the first state to require manufacturers to report whether products contain chemicals toxic to children, in 2008.

The deadline, however, was missed nine months ago and the state is still months away from creating a list of the top 50 chemicals that manufacturer’s of children’s products would be required to disclose.

Officials attribute the delay to difficulty prioritizing a short list from a field of thousands, budget cuts and a hiring freeze.

The state will seek public comment next month and by next spring a final list is expected.

Since the passing of the Children’s Safe Product Act last year in Washington – Connecticut, Maine and Minnesota have enacted similar legislation.

State officials have identified 2,000 chemicals from some 80,000, all of which are known to cause cancer, harm fetal development among other criteria. The list will be condensed to include those most likely to be found in children’s products and that are most harmful.

Six months after finalization of the list, manufacturers will be required to disclose if their products contain those chemicals.

"The end goal is raising consumer awareness so they can make informed decisions regarding the products they buy," said Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson (D-Seattle), lead sponsor of the law in Washington State.

According to Dickerson, bisphenol-A, or BPA, a substance commonly used to harden plastics that are used in baby bottles and various other products will most likely make the list. Mercury may also make the list. Chemicals such as phthalates and lead among others, which are presently federally regulated will not make it on the list.


A new Web site that rates consumer products on their toxic chemical content launched yesterday. HealthyStuff.org, run by the Ecology Center in Michigan, lists test data on over 900 products. In total, HealthyStuff.org is now home to over 15,000 test results on more than 5,000 common items including pet products, handbags, back-to-school products and more. #

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