Lawmaker Seeks To Squelch Flame Retardants
by Samantha Weigel, San Mateo Daily Journal
Swaddling a newborn against a nursing pillow or laying them on a cozy changing pad may not seem like dangerous behaviors to most parents. But for state Sen. Mark Leno, who’s leading the charge against the ubiquitous use of flame retardant chemicals in polyurethane foam and common household furnishings, everyday children’s products could be causing harm.
Leno, D-San Francisco, announced Tuesday a bill that would enable parents to choose what they expose their children to by requiring juvenile products be clearly labeled with whether they contain flame retardant chemicals tied to health hazards like cancer, infertility, lower IQ levels, hormone disruption and hyperactivity. When burned, flame retardants can create carbon monoxide and are extremely hazardous to firefighters as well, Leno said.
Senate Bill 763 would apply to everyday children’s goods like bassinets, high chair pads, nap mats, strollers, kid’s upholstered furniture, infant seats, baby carriers worn by parents and more.
Leno’s legislation builds off his previous successes to label upholstered furnishings and encouraging state officials to update California’s decades-old flammability standard that led to the pervasive use of fire retardants in the first place.