Monday, January 25, 2010

Senator Justice Tackles Toxic Toys Again

Senator Charlie Justice (D-St. Petersburg) will once again spearhead the effort to ensure that children’s products are free from harmful toxins, this time focusing on the dangerous metal of cadmium. Recent reports have shown that manufacturers have circumvented the restrictions on lead in children’s products by using the metal cadmium as a substitute. Cadmium, a known carcinogen, is just as toxic as lead, hindering brain development in the very young according to recent research.

“As a parent and legislator, I find it outrageous that the industry thinks it is ok to substitute one harmful product for another,” Senator Justice said. “It is up to us to remain vigilant and not allow, under any circumstances, products that contain toxic materials to reach our shelves or our children’s hands.”

Drafting state legislation that will ban cadmium in children’s products sold in Florida, Senator Justice has also sent a letter to U. S. Senators Bill Nelson and George LeMieux urging them to support Federal legislation being introduced to resolve this issue (letter attached). The Associated Press reported last week that hundreds of children’s jewelry items have tested positive for harmful levels of cadmium. The Consumer Product Safety Commission is asking parents to throw out all children’s jewelry that they deem questionable to be sure their kids are safe.

“There is nothing more important to our economy and our families then ensuring the safety of the goods sold in our stores,” Justice said. “I will continue to fight to make sure that the products we are buying for our kids are safe.”

In 2008, Senator Justice filed the Florida Toy Safety Act, regulating lead in children’s products. That same year, congress passed sweeping consumer safety legislation enacting strict regulations concerning toxics, including lead, in children’s products.

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