GHTA Public Policy Action Group Secures Appointment with
U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
Grand Rapids, Mich. - The GHTA, along with more than 60 other trade organizations and associations, signed a petition, which was drafted by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). The petition was then sent to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, to request that the Commission order an immediately effective emergency stay of the effective date of limits on lead content in accessible parts and components in children's products established under Section 101 (a)(2) of the consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 ("CPSIA") (Pub.L. 110-314).
A ballot was cast on February 9, 2009. Effective on February 10, 2009, section 101 of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act sets new limits on lead content in any children's product as defined in the Act. Generally, beginning on February 10, 2009, any children's product that contains more than 600 parts per million (ppm) of lead in any part that is accessible will be treated as a banned hazardous substance.
The term "children's product" is defined by the Act to mean any consumer product that is designed or intended primarily for children 12 years of age or younger. Congress set out four factors that must be considered in determining whether a consumer product is primarily intended for children 12 and under.
GHTA Meets With the CPSC February 5, 2009
Members of the Public Policy Action Group including GHTA Board Liaison, Julie Dix, Taggies; along with Doug Cofiell, GHTA president; Diane Carnevale Jones, GHTA executive director and GHTA attorney, Robin Harvey, Baker Hostetler, were granted a meeting with the CPSC, as requested and arranged by Harvey for the GHTA.
The purpose of the meeting was to educate the CPSC about the gift and home industry, to share challenges over current and pending legislation, to ask relevant questions, and to gain relevant information from the CPSC.
Information covered included:
- PowerPoint presentation by Doug Cofiell, providing an overview of the Gift and Home Industry and the challenges it faces with compliance.
- Request guidance on labeling for products not intended, designed manufactured or sold to children
- Discuss continuing confusion and gaps over testing protocols and other specific challenges with the testing process, including the limited availability of accredited laboratories for certified testing; also the sampling of products during testing, including analytic and procedural variability
- Discuss costs associated with component level testing
- Discuss the interest reported by state attorneys general in enforcement actions over Christmas ornaments and holiday decorations
- Discuss the challenges facing the industry with State interpretation of the Federal law regarding enforcement variables. One standard for compliance is needed.
A full report was emailed to all GHTA members, detailing the meeting and next steps that will be initiated by the GHTA, under the guidance of its Public Policy Action Group, headed by chair, George Schuetz, Natural Life.
"We left the CPSC understanding the importance of the role GHTA will play as a united voice, a central point of reference for education about current policies and a place where future standards could be established," says Cofiell. "Our goal in 2009 is to provide up-to-the-minute information on this Public Policy issue that affects the gift and home industry and to provide a place where future standards could be established. We will reach out to all the industry-at-large and encourage all parties to join the GHTA, in order that we can speak with one powerful, united voice."
For more information on Public Policy and GHTA membership, visit www.giftandhome.org.
About the GIFT AND HOME Trade Association:
GHTA is the gift and home industry's non-profit professional trade association formed to help vendors, sales agencies and industry affiliates work together to improve relationships. GHTA's mission is to lead and transform the gift and home industry to ensure its long-term health and viability. GHTA has four major initiatives: to educate sales professionals; to understand and educate the industry on opportunities for technological efficiencies; to support and cultivate the industry's independent retailers; and to understand and educate the industry on showroom/trade show costs, statistics, schedules, opportunities and preferences. GHTA can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on the GIFT AND HOME Trade Association visit www.giftandhome.org.