The CPSIA: It’s No Joke

by This is Carrie on April 2, 2009

Yesterday a rally to amend the CPSIA occurred in Washington D.C. . The “stay” issued back in February had a majority of the public thinking that things “were going to be taken care of”. Not so. The fight has been raging on as more and more businesses have become unintended casualties of a poorly written law. And from the letter I received back from my State Rep, it’s even more clear that even most of the lawmakers have no idea what’s going on.

Just to give you an idea, here is how the law affect my business specifically:

Traditionally bound books printed after 1985 will receive and exemption from the law. My book has a spiral binding so it will not fall under the exemption. For the time being, I can use the 100% lead-free testing results from my spiral binding supplier to abide by the CPSIA, but in August, this type of component testing will not be allowed under the law. At this point, I will need to have my own testing and certification done (and so will each and every other company who uses the exact same already certified lead-free spiral binding) which will cost hundreds of dollars. For a small company, hundreds of dollars is a lot – especially for redundant testing. Then, there are a whole slew of new labeling requirements which I can’t quite figure out since my company doesn’t have a team of people whose job is “labeling”. It’s just me and a stack of books.

But the reality is, as the law stands, my little company will most likely survive. I have one product, it’s not handmade, and I just happened to run out of pre-CPSIA inventory at exactly the right time. I am one of the lucky ones.

But if you’re going to be okay, why the fight? Because so many businesses will not be okay and it’s not because they sell unsafe products for children. Among these are businesses that I adore like children’s resale stores and etsy shops. And don’t even get me started on the books libraries might have to get rid of and don’t get Todd started on the death of the kid’s motorcycle business. It’s all because of this well-intended but poorly-written law called the CPSIA. It may not kill my business, but it will affect my life (and yours) in ways it shouldn’t be allowed to do.

Telephone and letter-writing campaigns to Congress are still in effect. Ask your Representatives to support Sen DeMint’s CPSIA Amendment. His proposed changes keep all the good intent of the law without the destructive byproducts.

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