Rest easy, moms. U.S. regulators aren't going to stop Goodwill and other secondhand stores from selling used children's clothes and equipment.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission today clarified that a new law set to take effect on Feb. 10 won't affect thrift stores and other resellers of children's gear. Retailers had been worried they'd have to certify that used products were free of lead and phthalates -- a cost-prohibitive procedure for many small shops.
"If you're selling used children's products, you're not required to certify that those products meet the lead limits or the phthalates standards," commission spokeswoman Patty Davis said in an interview. "What the law does require is that the manufacturers and the importers certify that those products made after Feb. 10 don't violate the new lead limits."
The commission directed resellers to pay attention to categories of products that are particularly risky since stores can be penalized for selling hazardous products. For instance, the agency mentioned cribs and play yards that are more prone to be recalled, and jewelry, dolls with buttons or painted toys that are more likely to contain lead.
I don't know about you, but this is a huge relief to me. It's also a testament to how the voices of many moms, and mommy bloggers, can be heard even in Washington D.C. Maybe there was never any danger that Consumer Product Safety Commission officials would shut down my local consignment shop, but as a working mom planning spring and summer wear for my kids, I sure am glad to know it won't happen.
Makers of handcrafted children's items must still wait for the Consumer Product Safety Commission's decision affecting their products, which is open for comment. Those manufacturers also have expressed concern that the new rule would drive them out of business.
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