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« New Study Shows Deadly Delays in Notification of Dangerous, Defective Products | Main | Why is Sessions Keeping Bush's Secrets? »

Time to Put Safety First

Defective and dangerous products - from lead-painted toys to vacuum cleaners that catch fire - are being allowed onto our store shelves and into our homes.  The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has failed to do its job and protect American consumers. 

Public Citizen just released a study showing that manufacturers often wait nearly three years before telling the CPSC about defective products that can kill people - and the agency typically takes another seven months to warn the public.  Some of these products include infant swings implicated in six deaths.

We need a strong, effective agency that can warn the public quickly about dangerous and defective products - and enforce the law against violators.  Under current law, the CPSC must ask permission from manufacturers to get vital safety information to the public.  What's more, the agency can't fine companies enough to make sure that they comply with the law.

The status quo is unacceptable - the CPSC should protect American consumers, not manufacturers!

The Senate commerce committee recently reported out the Consumer Product Safety Reform Act of 2007 (S. 2045), a bill that would give the CPSC much-needed muscle.  Now it goes to the full Senate for approval.  But, as happens all too often in Washington, D.C., bills that are carefully honed in committee become unrecognizable after amendments, concessions and the inevitable congressional horse trading take their toll on a proposal’s original intent.

Please urge your senators to ensure that the Senate bill passes intact - without weakening changes - for everyone's health and safety. 

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Comments

Lisa Lipin

I could not agree more that the passage of Senate Bill S2045 as written is imperative in order to better protect consumers in our country. This bill is a strong bill that must remain intact without being modifiied.

I have been advocating for change at the Consumer Product Safety Commission since 2003 after my son was nearly strangled to death by an imported toy called the Yo-Yo Water Ball. Despite the fact that the CPSC has received 416 reports of injury related to this toy, the agency had not taken any significant action to protect children from this deadly toy. I was able to get my home State of Illinois to ban the toy a few years ago. The State of NJ recently banned the toy. But the real question is why was State action necessary if we have an agency in place who is suppose to regulate safety issues and take appropriate action to remove dangerous products from the market place. The CPSC must be not only be given the power to act but more importantly must follow through and take the appropriate action to remove dangerous products from shelves when they learn of them. The CPSC must represent the consumers and not the toy industry!

I believe that the toy manufactures must operate in the world by showing "corporate responsibility" by making sure that the products that they market to children are indeed 100% safe! As I've been saying for years, it is time that we put people before profit!

I am grateful to advocay groups like Public Citizen who continue to put these important safety issues in the spotlight giving consumers like me the information that we need.

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