Today, KID, along with Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky and Illinois PIRG state director Brian Imus, released Moving Towards Safety, a review of 2010 recalls and CPSC actions.
Just about every two days there was a recall of a children’s product in 2010. These 160 recalls account for over 44 million individual toys, cribs, sweatshirts, strollers and more. That’s an increase of twelve percent from 2009 in recalls and 110% in units recalled.
At first glance these facts seem to indicate that the state of children’s product safety had worsened in the last year. However, though the number of recalls and the number of children hurt and killed by unsafe products is cause for concern, there were marked improvements to product safety oversight in 2010 as a result of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) and other CPSC actions. We believe that many of these actions will not only reduce recalls in the future, but make it more likely recalled products will be retrieved from use.
The increase in recalls from 2009 can be partially attributed to the numerous recalls to remove from use failure-prone drop-side cribs which have been linked to dozens of deaths, as well as children’s sweatshirts and outerwear that continue to be produced with dangerous drawstrings.
The recalls show that we still have a long way to go before children are fully protected from unsafe products, but at the same time CPSC has taken actions that have had a measurable and positive impact on safety. We can take heart that we are moving in the right direction.