This week’s revelations that toys and jewelry made in China contain high levels of lead is the last straw. It’s time to stop buying toys made in China.
The story in USA Today about the crisis is particularly alarming. In the last four years, the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued 27 recalls for children’s jewelry made in China due to high lead levels in paint or other health threats. On June 13, 2007, the CPSC recalled 1.5 million Thomas the Tank Engine wooden railway toys produced over the last two and half years because high lead levels were detected in the paint used to decorate the trains. Other toys manufactured in China have been found to contain kerosene.
USA Today reports that, despite known developmental delays, IQ impairments, and impact on healthy kidney and liver function, the Chinese government told the CPSC that it’s unnecessary to limit the lead content in the products it manufactures for kids because it believes much of the lead wouldn’t seep out of jewelry so would "do little harm for children."
Maybe the Chinese didn’t hear about the 20,000 kids who were treated for lead poisoning between 2000 and 2005 thanks to the toys and jewelry they chewed on and, in some cases, swallowed.
We should not put our kids’ health and safety on the line just so they can play with a few trinkets. You can find wonderful alternatives at local crafts fairs or online at our sister site, TheWorldWomenWant.com.
And next time you visit Toys R Us? Tell them you’re not buying toys imported from China until China shows it cares about kids by getting the lead out of its toys.