Chance to Protect Babies from Toxic Chemicals

“The decline in some marine mammal populations is linked to the prevalence of flame retardant chemicals and other persistent organic pollutants” - Jean-Michel Cousteau

On Tuesday, July 7th, the California State Assembly Committee on Business and Professions passed SB772, a bill that will protect babies from dangerous toxic chemicals found in their cribs, strollers, breast-feeding pillows and other baby and juvenile products. OFS has joined forces with other NGO’s including Friends of Earth, NRDC and Green Science Policy Institute in strong support of this bill.

“Flame retardant chemicals are linked to cancer as well as neurodevelopmental and reproductive problems such as hyperactivity and reduced fertility,” says Dr. Arlene Blum, director of the Green Science Policy Institute. “And there is no demonstrated need for them in baby products.”

“The decline in some marine mammal populations is linked to the prevalence of flame retardant chemicals and other persistent organic pollutants,” says marine biologist Holly Lohuis of the Ocean Futures Society. “Because marine mammals are so similar in biology to humans, I had myself and my four-year-old son tested and, to my horror, we are both contaminated; my son’s levels were off the charts. It’s unconscionable to have these chemicals actually mandated in products for anyone, let alone children.”

“The chemical industry has used less than ethical tactics to defeat legislation like this, including funding phony front groups, generous campaign contributions to legislators, and going so far as to exploit people of color in their messaging when people of color suffer disproportionately from chemical contamination,” according to Russell Long, vice president with Friends of the Earth.

“Consumer awareness of toxins is increasing, resulting in parents demanding safety of juvenile products. Many of California's regulations, including TB 117, are killing in-state businesses and angering California's business leaders. TB 117 is blocking our ability to compete in the global marketplace and is damaging California's reputation.” says Janina Pawlowski, co-founder and former CEO of ELoan.com.

Senator Mark Leno’s SB772 bill will now go to the Assembly Appropriations Committee, then to the Assembly floor and hopefully to the Governor before the end of the summer. Please keep checking back to the OFS website for regular updates and sample letters to send to your elected representatives.