Enforcement Delayed for the Westchester County, NY Children’s Products Safety Law
TIA Monitoring Retailers’ Reactions
May 17, 2016 | The Toy Industry Association (TIA) has learned that enforcement has been delayed for the Children’s Products Safety Act, a law banning the sale of children’s products containing any level of formaldehyde, benzene, lead, mercury, antimony, arsenic, cadmium or cobalt within Westchester County, NY.
Although the Act went into effect on May 15, 2016, TIA received a message from the County Executive’s office confirming that it will not enforce the law until a settlement is reached between the Safe to Play Coalition and Albany County over similar legislation regarding children’s products in Albany County.
TIA’s legal counsel has confirmed that this written communication provides legal coverage to members and retailers and protects them from any enforcement of the Westchester law.
“TIA has been, and will continue to be, in close contact with the Westchester County Executive’s Office,” said Owen Caine, TIA director of state government affairs. “As further developments occur in Albany and Westchester Counties, we will be sure all TIA members are kept updated.”
TIA representatives have met with the County Executive’s office and staff several times in the past year to discuss potential changes to the law and to possibly make exceptions for trace levels of common, unavoidable chemicals used in toy manufacturing. TIA has also maintained contact with the New York Retailers Association to establish how area retailers are responding to the enactment date.
“We are pleased that Westchester County has suspended enforcement of this flawed law. The law seeks to regulate naturally-occurring substances present in toys only as unavoidable contaminants at minute levels, and the law’s absolute banning language is scientifically unsupportable, since it isn’t possible to measure a zero level of any substance,” stated Al Kaufman, TIA’s senior vice president of technical affairs.
Members are encouraged to contact TIA’s Owen Caine (202.459.0361) with any questions or concerns. TIA will keep members apprised of developments.