FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
|Contact: Victor Domine
Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association
Make Toy Safety a Top Priority This Holiday Season
JPMA, Together with TIA, Provides Safety Tips for Smart Shopping and Safe Play
New York, NY | December 15, 2016 – The holidays are an exciting time for parents and children of all ages. Finding the “perfect” toy for a child is part of the fun, but parents and caregivers should always be sure to choose toys that are appropriate for kids before making a purchase. The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) and the Toy Industry Association (TIA) remind parents to make safety a top priority when shopping, selecting and playing with toys during the holidays.
“The holidays are the perfect time of year to remind parents and caregivers about toy safety,” said Joan Lawrence, TIA’s senior vice president of standards and regulatory affairs. “We encourage families to select age-appropriate playthings that match their child’s interests, to shop at reputable retailers they know and trust and to always supervise kids while they play. By following these important tips, parents can ensure that playtime will be both fun and safe this holiday season and all year long.”
Approximately 3.5 billion toys and games are sold in the United States every year, more than half during the holiday season. As parents prepare for the holidays, they are encouraged to keep the following guidelines in mind to ensure a happy and safe environment for their loved ones:
- Be sure to check and follow age guidance and other safety information on toy packaging. Remember, the age-grading isn't about how smart your child is—it’s based on the developmental skills and abilities of children at a given age, and the specific features of a toy.
- Choose a toy that matches your child’s age and interests. If a toy is too advanced, your child will become frustrated, and if it’s too simple, they’ll get bored.
- Avoid toys with small parts when shopping for children under age three (3) and children who mouth toys.
- Ensure that plush (stuffed) toys have age-appropriate features such as embroidered or well-secured eyes and noses for younger children, and seams that are reinforced to withstand an older child’s play.
- Avoid toys with sharp points or rough edges, especially for younger children.
- Exercise caution when buying toys at flea markets, garage sales, second-hand / thrift stores, etc., as these vendors may not be monitoring for recalled products.
- If you receive toys as gifts, check the toys and read the warning labels before letting kids play. If the toy needs to be assembled, read the instructions and ensure the toy is put together properly.
- When you replace a battery in a toy, carefully re-engage the locking mechanism of the battery compartment so kids can’t access it.
- Be sure to actively supervise children, especially young ones, while they enjoy their new toys.
Families can rest assured that all toys sold in the U.S., no matter where they are made, are subject to strict mandatory safety standards. Before a toy makes its way to a store shelf or website, it’s required to have been tested and certified as compliant with more than 100 standards and tests for safety – and be certified by an accredited toy-testing lab.
“Parents can ensure a safe and fun holiday experience for their little ones by reading and heeding the warnings and recommendations that come with toys,” remarked Julie Vallese, JPMA Managing Director and mom of two. “When parents focus on the safety of choosing toys it lets kids focus on the fun that comes with playing with them.”
About the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA)
The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) is a non-profit association representing leading manufacturers who make prenatal to preschool products for the North American market. The JPMA serves as an advocate for the industry and is committed to ensuring the safe use and selection of juvenile products. Each September, the JPMA celebrates its Baby Safety Month initiative, heavily promoting the campaign’s messages through its consumer brand, the Baby Safety Zone. To find out more information about the JPMA, its programs and its members, visit www.jpma.org. Follow JPMA on Twitter @JPMA, connect with JPMA on Facebook or on YouTube. Parents, caregivers and consumers should visit www.BabySafetyZone.org.
About The Toy Industry Association (TIA)
The Toy Industry Association™, Inc. (TIA) is the not-for-profit trade association representing all businesses involved in creating and delivering toys and youth entertainment products for kids of all ages. Over the past 100 years, TIA has led the health and growth of the toy industry, and today its 950+ members account for an estimated 90% of the annual $25 billion U.S. domestic toy market. TIA has a long history of leadership in toy safety, having helped develop the first comprehensive toy safety standard more than 40 years ago, and remains committed to working with medical experts, government, consumers and industry on ongoing programs to ensure safe and fun play. To learn more about TIA, visit www.toyassociation.org or www.playsafe.org.