Chemicals Revealed: The State of Chemicals in Children’s Products
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Chemicals that are harmful to kids are put in thousands of children’s products. For over a decade, Washington state has required companies that make children’s products to report to the state if their products contain any of the 85 chemicals considered a high concern for kids’ health. Between September 1, 2018 and January 31, 2019, 182 manufacturers filed 8700 new reports of toxic chemicals in kids’ products sold in Washington state.
Manufacturers reported putting chemicals linked to cancer, hormone disruption, reproductive problems, and neurological problems in products kids use to play, bathe, and sleep. When you consider that just one report can mean there are hundreds or even thousands of that product for sale in Washington, that’s a lot of toxic chemicals on store shelves.
Companies reporting to the Department of Ecology include Greenbrier International (Dollar Tree), Claire’s, Target, Hasbro, The Gap, and Little Tykes. Chemicals that must be reported are those designated by the state as a high concern for kids’ health. Some examples include:
- “Lip Cosmetics” from Claire’s: hormone-disrupting phthalate DEHP.
- “Sleepwear” and “Sleep Trousers” from The Gap reported to contain phthalate DEP in the highest concentration reporting range.
- “Underwear Variety Packs” by private-label manufacturer Delta Galil USA reported to contain BPS, a chemical used by manufacturers as a replacement for BPA.
The most recent data highlights the widespread use of chemicals of concern. After nearly a decade of information, it’s now time to act to reduce the source of harmful chemicals. Policymakers must act to pass chemical phaseout laws that apply to ALL product makers and retailers. It’s the only way to ensure ALL people are protected–regardless of their ability to pay of where they shop.