ALBANY, NY— Community groups throughout the state are praising the New York State Assembly for easily passing the Child Safe Products Act (CSPA), a bill that phases out dangerous chemicals in products marketed to kids in New York, by a wide bipartisan margin of 112 yeas and 29 nays.
CSPA, first introduced by Sen. Phil Boyle (R-Bay Shore) and Assembly Environmental Conservation Committee Chair Steve Englebright (D-Setauket) last month, now must pass the Senate and be signed by the Governor to become law. The bill would require the state to publish a list of toxic chemicals, require disclosure of their use in children’s products, and ultimately ban their use over time.
“Children are more sensitive to and are at an increased risk from chemical exposure. Currently, New York prohibits the use of dangerous chemicals on a chemical-by-chemical basis. The Presidents’ Cancer Panel reported that nearly 80,000 chemicals are used in the country today, many of which are unstudied and largely unregulated. We must act to protect children’s health from unnecessary toxic chemicals found in products designed for kids. It’s time to put health concerns first,” said Assemblyman Steve Englebright.
Senator Phil Boyle, sponsor of the matching legislation, said “I applaud the Assembly’s passage today of the Child Safe Product Act with broad bipartisan support. As more legislators across the political spectrum see the importance of protecting our children against toxic chemicals, I urge even more of my Senate colleagues to support this important legislation.”
The JustGreen Partnership, which includes pediatricians, teachers, nurses, environmental and sustainability groups, learning disability, breast and childhood cancer advocates, healthy schools advocates, sustainable businesses, environmental justice leaders, and other allied organizations, is also optimistic about the bill as it reaches the State Senate.
“Tough, tenacious, together. Working with coalitions like the JustGreen Partnership and the New York State Breast Cancer Network, we will witness the Child Safe Products Act pass into law,” said Karen Joy Miller, from Huntington Breast Cancer Action Coalition, Inc.
“We applaud the NYS Assembly and bill sponsor Steve Englebright for taking action to help business leaders across the state meet consumer demand for safer products,” said Laura Ornstein, Coordinator of the New York State Sustainable Business Council. “As more than half the Senate supports the matching bill sponsored by Sen. Phil Boyle, we call on the Senate Leadership to bring the Child Safe Products Act to the floor for a vote.”
“Moms applaud the bipartisan support for the Child Safe Products Act,” states Trisha Sheehan, Regional Field Manager for Moms Clean Air Force. “Protecting our children from toxic chemicals is not a partisan issue. We all care about children’s health and keeping toxic chemicals out of their products should be on everyone’s agenda.”
“New Yorkers are counting on the State Legislature to protect our children from toxic chemicals in the toys they play with and the products they use,” said John Replogle, President & CEO of Seventh Generation. “We commend Assembly Member Steven Englebright and his colleagues for passing the Child Safe Products Act. We are hopeful that the State Senate will follow the Assembly’s example, and will swiftly pass the CSPA, keeping children across the state as safe as possible for generations to come.”
“Assembly passage of the Child Safe Products Act was a nice Earth Day gift to all parents across New York State,” said Kathy Curtis, executive director of Clean and Healthy New York and co-leader of the JustGreen Partnership. “But more must be done. It’s still legal and common practice to add toxic chemicals to infant’s and children’s products. To make the dream of safe products for all children a reality, the Senate must pass this initiative and deliver it to the Governor,” Curtis added.
“We commend the action of the New York State Assembly, who have already done what is necessary to protect the health and safety of our children now and for future generations,” said Francesca Sommer, Executive Director of the Learning Disabilities Association of New York State. “We urge the Senate to take similar action!”
“This is a game-changing advance for children,” said Claire Barnett, founder and executive director of the Healthy Schools Network, Inc. “We are grateful to the Assembly and look forward to Senate action.”
“The NYS Assembly continues to demonstrate their commitment to protecting New York’s children and the environment by passing A.5612, the Child Safe Products Act,” said Caitlin Pixley, Conservation Associate of the Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter. “This important legislation works to ensure a toxic-free future. Whether during production, consumption, or disposal, toxic chemicals get into our air, water, wildlife and natural places. We thank Assemblyman Englebright and the many other Assembly members who voted “Yes”, especially on the 45th anniversary of Earth Day. We now look to the NYS Senate to take up this issue and bring the Child Safe Products Act to the floor.”
In addition to the state legislative campaign, counties across New York are also taking action and introducing local legislation. In 2015, 28 states are expected to advance policies to protect the public from toxic chemicals. Eleven other states are considering policies similar to New York’s Child Safe Products Act.