Thursday, January 15, 2009

Ten predictions for the CPSIA’s effect on children’s products in 2009

I haven't said much lately about the CPSIA (Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act), but unfortunately, this isn't a case of no news is good news. In fact, all we've gotten lately from the Consumer Product Safety Commission is confusion upon confusion. There are rumors of concessions for various products or groups, but then the CPSC comes right back with threats. So no, none of us who sell our handmade children's products are anywhere close to being in the clear yet, and yes, my business and thousands of others are still threatened.

So back to the title: for 10 predictions on the CPSIA's effect, click on over to this story posted this afternoon on Z Recommends. If you thought the CPSIA wasn't very far reaching, you'll think again after reading this. I felt compelled to comment, so I've reprinted my comment below:

I think you’ve totally hit the nail on the head with these predictions! I keep praying that a giant cloud of Common Sense will move over DC and rain down on the heads of the CPSC, Congress, President-Elect Obama and anyone else who can make a difference with this well-meaning but very misguided piece of legislation. I think the CPSC has done a dreadful job of handling all this, too, by the way and I know I’m not alone in that opinion!

I’m all for safer children’s products, but this legislation has gone about it in the wrong way: “all products” is pretty far-reaching. So are libraries going to ban children or dump their children’s sections? (That’s about the only prediction you didn’t touch on in your list above that I could think of.)

So what have I done? As a mom and Etsy seller of children’s hair accessories, I have spread the word wherever I could since I first learned about this almost 6 weeks ago: I’ve e-mailed all the major bloggers I read who I thought might pick up this issue (including you guys), I’ve posted on forums (both on Etsy and a hair clip forum I belong to), I’ve signed every petition I can find, and I’ve e-mailed the CPSC and my representatives. Oh, and I’ve posted Save Handmade buttons on all 3 of my blogs and submitted an entry to Endangered Whimsy, a blog that highlights all the children’s products that will soon disappear.

So what can I do now? I don’t know. At this point I just keep on keeping on. I’m still stocking my Etsy shop and working on wholesale and consignment agreements as if this will all be worked out. I read about a Class Action Lawsuit against the CPSC this morning and will have to look into that. Testing all my products? Too expensive at my price point-- all my items are $5 or less and come in countless variations.

I feel like I’m on information overload at this point, but thanks for this post-- I’ll go mention it in the Etsy forums now. Mass media has missed so much of the scope of this already, so thanks for actually getting this right.

And yes, this is the longest comment I’ve ever posted on any blog… sorry!

So what to do now? If you haven't, please click on the Save Handmade button over on my sidebar. Sign a petition, e-mail a representative, or just pray for common sense in Washington...

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