Amputating the arm…

to cure the hangnail.

Not only have regulations multiplied exponentially in our nation in our lifetimes, a new law that will take affect on Feb. 10th has the potential of truly changing “life as we know it.”

Congress overwhelming approved it – with only Ron Paul, in the House, and 3 Senators voting against it. GW signed it into law – stamped his approval – in Aug. It is the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, CPSIA.

I’m amazed at the “quietness” of this law. Many of the people that will be affected by this law as businesses, are just now hearing of it! IOW, their business may be completely illegal in a month, and they don’t know about it!

The law stems from the problem of lead being found in children’s products recently (2007). So to protect us all the CPSC has determined that every product (each production batch) for children under the age of 12 must be tested for lead, and certified to be “lead-free” (one acceptable level for the Feb. date, a much lower acceptable allowance in a few months). The fine for anyone selling or giving a child’s product that has not be “certified” is $100,000 per incidence and up to 5 years in prison.

This law will apply to used or new products, anything for children. In an update (“clarification”) issued yesterday (Jan. 8th) it was stated that used items do not have to be tested to be resold, but they are still under the same compliance. i.e. If you sell, attempt to sell, market, etc. an item that is discovered later to not comply to the regulations, you are held responsible. Here is just a short list of the things that could become illegal contraband – a felony to give or sell – after Feb. 10th.

Used clothing, blankets, bedding, etc.
Used toys, games
Used books and other media.

“All untested items, regardless of lead content, are to be declared “banned hazardous products.” The CPSC has already determined the law applies to every children’s item on shelves, not just to items made beginning Feb. 10.”

This quote may seem a little alarmist, as the “clarification” yesterday states that these used products can be sold, but at the risk of later prosecution. Those that deal in used items have to weigh whether that is a risk worth taking. This will have implications on thrift stores, ebay, consignment shops, flea markets, craft shows, used curriculum fairs, used book elists or websites, antique book stores, areas of antique stores, libraries – even garage sales. Anyone or anywhere that has been selling (or giving) used children’s items will need to look at closing their doors or taking the risk – at least the “children’s” aspect of that business.

This will have deep ramifications for any of us that buy used products for our children out of necessity – whether their clothing, toys, or curriculum. It will have deep implications for those that make their living selling used children’s items. It will have deep ramifications on our nation’s landfills as perfectly good and usable items are thrown away, rather than taking the risk of reselling them.

But this is only the tip of the iceberg. Check back tomorrow to see the implications for new children’s products, especially to us as home educators.

Go to Part 2.

For Me and My House ~ At Jesus’ feet,
Lisa @ Me and My House ~ Discipleship for Life!
1 Thessalonians 5:23
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