TIA Asks Members To Thwart NYC Phthalate/BPA Ban

Posted by Marty Brochstein on July 01, 2010

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The Toy Industry Association sent an alert to its NY-based members this week, asking them to contact City Council members urging defeat of a bill that would ban the use of phthalates and BPA in toys sold in New York City. The text of the TIA alert is reproduced below:

Dear New York City Toy Industry Representative:

We need your help protecting the toy industry in NYC!  Please contact City Council Members and urge them to oppose Int. No 175; which if passed would BAN BPA and Phthalates in toys.  These proposals would result in a nightmare of new testing costs and product re-design demands for BPA and be duplicative of federal requirements under the CPSIA.

ACTION ITEM:  Please cut and paste the text below and the email addresses to email key City Council Members and urge him/her to oppose this legislation to protect your business and employees.  Companies are encouraged to CUSTOMIZE these emails and add information about your company and its employees.

The Council could take action on this bill at any time so please don’t delay!

SAMPLE Grassroots Letter:

TO: arroyo@council.nyc.ny.us dickens@council.nyc.ny.us;  eugene@council.nyc.ny.us; ferreras@council.nyc.ny.us; foster@council.nyc.ny.us; mendez@council.nyc.ny.us; rivera@council.nyc.ny.us; rose@council.nyc.ny.us; vallonejr@council.nyc.ny.us; jvanbramer@council.nyc.gov; vann@council.nyc.ny.us

BCC: ahackman@toyassociation.org; psandel@toyassociation.org

Re: Oppose Int. No. 175 – Preempted & Will NOT Improve Safety

Dear Chairman Arroyo and Members of the Committee on Health:

As a representative of the toy industry in New York City, I’m writing today to express my grave concerns with Introduction No. 175, proposing to ban Bisphenol-A (BPA) and certain Phthalates in toys.  I am requesting your help to OPPOSE Int. No. 175 – since it is will not improve safety and is preempted by federal law in the case of phthalates.

We are committed to the safety of children.  However, we are deeply concerned with this legislation for the following reasons:

•    Regarding the proposed restrictions on phthalates in toys, the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), signed into law in August 2008, already restricts the use of these specific phthalates in toys and has the effect of expressly preempting states and localities from imposing additional restrictions on phthalates in these product categories.

•    BPA’s limited use in toys is for durability and shatter-resistance; and/or  when UV resistance is needed to PREVENT the creation of acute hazards such as breakage that could create small parts (posing a potential choking hazard) and/or sharp edges (posing potential laceration injuries) in a child’s environment.  Elimination of BPA in these important applications could degrade the safety of toys and other consumer products where no safer alternative has been identified.

•    BPA is not restricted in toys by any local, state, federal or national government anywhere in the world, and the proposed BPA restrictions in Int. No. 175 would be the broadest restrictions on BPA in any jurisdiction.

•    Toys are already highly reviewed for safety.  In addition to meeting internal safety assessments, my company already complies with numerous federal environmental and safety regulations under a variety of laws including the Federal Hazardous Substances Act (FHSA), the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) and the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA).

For the reasons noted above, I urge you to oppose the passage of Int. No. 175.  Thank you for your time.

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