Expensive, Intensive, Ridiculous

Feb 18, 2009

From the News-Argus (h/t Walter Olson):

Put into effect Tuesday, the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, prompted by massive toy recalls in 2008, forbids the sale of anything for children under 12 in the U.S. if it contains more than 600 parts per million of lead. But while many newer items meet the standard, most local thrift stores have no way to test their used children's products for lead content, said Steve Snyderman from the Raleigh Goodwill Community Foundation office. And even if they could, he added, the testing is extremely expensive and labor intensive.

And so on Tuesday, the employees at the local Goodwill store were busy pulling all toys off the shelves, as well as any children's clothing that contained zippers, snaps or plastic. Their strollers and car seats had to go, too.

Snyderman said the new law is really going to hurt his organization, which has provided the local Goodwill stores with signs explaining that donations of children's toys and accessories can no longer be accepted. "We don't have a choice. We've gotten a lot of calls from irate shoppers who don't understand the new law," he said. "I truly regret this. And there doesn't appear to be any legal relief in sight."

Don't worry Steve, according to the New York Times, your troubles are just imaginary.

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