The state of Maine has decided to take matters into its own hands while the Federal Government wavers on updating the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) of 1976. The state has now released its own commissioned report, Poison in Paint, Toxics in Toys, which found that hundreds of brand name consumer products including Playmobile Toys and Chicco baby rattles contain bisphenol-A (BPA), a hormone-disrupting chemical already banned in baby bottles and sippy cups. The report also found another class of hormone-disrupting chemicals known as NPEs in household paints, cleaners and wood finishes. Read on to discover which toys contain BPA.
It seems these nasty chemicals will keep popping up in the places we least expect them, that is until the Federal Government decides to update their outdated Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976 with contemporary research. “In the absence of federal leadership, state policies are the best way to identify and restrict toxic chemicals in products,” said Mike Belliveau, lead report author and executive director of the Environmental Health Strategy Center based in Portland, Maine. “Until Congress acts, we can expect more states and businesses to respond to consumer demand for toxic-free products.”
The report found 650 brand name products that contain BPA or NPEs. BPA was found mainly in plastic products including many children’s toys and the NPE in things like paint and cleaning products. HealthyStuff.org has a full list of the products that were tested and found to contain BPA, as well as a list of products containing NPEs. The BPA list includes toys and other children’s products from Playmobil, Chicco, Gerber, LeapFrog, MXS, Pokemon, and SpyGear. Sure, toys aren’t meant to go in kid’s mouths like bottles and sippy cups, but we all know they find their way in there any way! Also on the HealthyStuff.org BPA list – Similac Infant Formula.
The report raises more questions about the need to update the TSCA to include current known toxins, while waiting for the Federal Government to do its part, 18 states have passed more than 70 laws banning toxic chemicals or creating chemical management systems. The Maine report comes thanks to the state’s 2008 Kid Safe Products Act. There is movement afoot in Congress though with the The Safe Chemicals Act of 2011 currently being discussed by legislators — and families around the country organizing to help urge their congress people to vote in favor of it.
“As a new mom, I’m relieved to finally get some information I can use as a consumer to protect the health of my baby,” said Hannah Pingree, the former Speaker of the Maine House of Representatives who sponsored the the Kid Safe Products Act in 2008. “But why are these chemicals still used in everyday products, and what else are they keeping us in the dark about? Congress has to fix our broken federal chemical safety system. Passing the Safe Chemicals Act is the only way to protect the health of all American families.”