Retail Council of New York State and Advocates Announce Unprecedented Agreement on Path to Passage of Child Safe Products Act

All eyes on Senate, Assembly, Governor to move bill across finish line


ALBANY, NY — In an unprecedented agreement, The Retail Council of New York State and advocates endorsed language to amend the Child Safe Products Act (CSPA). With those amendments, advocates and retailers stand united in their call for the bill’s passage.


Ted Potrikus, President and CEO of the Retail Council of New York State, issued the following statement announcing their support:


Governor Cuomo, the Assembly, and the Senate all made the Child Safe Products Act a priority for the 2015 session. Their leadership spurred a constructive, candid, and honest discussion between the retailers selling these products and the health and environmental advocates looking for clear guidelines on what can be sold in New York stores.


I’m pleased that our discussions have led to what we think is the strongest product safety bill in the nation.  We think it reflects the priorities we’ve heard from Governor Cuomo and state legislature, from advocates, and from the people who shop in our stores, as well as the practical considerations we needed to ensure an effective, statewide application of a single standard.


“We thank our friends in the environmental and health advocacy communities for participating so vigorously in these conversations, and we thank Governor Cuomo, Chairman Englebright, and Senator Boyle for setting the tone and recognizing the seriousness of the issue.  We hope that they’ll agree to a final product that lets all of us move forward on an issue that means so much to so many people across New York State.


This endorsement furthers evidences the momentum of the bill after Senator Phil Boyle acknowledged “we are close” on bill negotiations.


"With so much hard work by so many it would be a downright shame if our leaders dropped the ball.  New York's kids are depending on us and we can't let them down," said Kathy Curtis, Executive Director of Clean and Healthy New York.


"The advocates have worked hard with those who have opposed this bill in the past to find a way to come together for the good of the kids of New York State. Now, what we need is leadership from the Governor, the Senate and the Legislature to close the deal to protect millions of New York State's kids from the chemicals that can harm their health.  Don't let them down," said Cecil Corbin-Mark, Deputy Director of WE ACT for Environmental Justice.


“This agreement is the result of a good old fashioned compromise. We commend the Retail Council for joining us in putting our differences aside to reach a fair and reasonable deal," said Marcia Bystryn, President of the New York League of Conservation Voters. "Collectively we are sending a clear message: statewide action is in the best interests of business, children, and the environment. Now it is up to the Governor, Senate, and Assembly to make sure this plan becomes law.


We applaud the Retail Council of New York State’s leadership in standing up for our kids,” offered Ashley Orgain, Manager of Mission Advocacy and Outreach for Seventh Generation. “Seventh Generation has shown time and time again that you can be profitable AND operate in the best interest of the public. We look forward to the Senate’s vote on this crucial piece of information." 


"We are pleased with the new language in this bill. It achieves the twin goals of protecting New York's children and enabling New York business to compete in the global economy," said Laura Ornstein, coordinator of the New York State Sustainable Business Council, an alliance of business organizations and businesses advancing a sustainable economy in New York State. "Now the bill is set to provide the market clarity that businesses are calling for as well as accelerate the transition to the safer marketplace that consumers are demanding."


"As a mom, its so refreshing to see industry and advocates working together on this issue – it's common sense – we don't want toxic chemicals in products meant for children. The message is loud and clear from New Yorkers across the state, we want passage of the Child Safe Product Act, and we are not waiting till next year, next session, or next week, we want it today," said Renee Scholz, Moms for Non-Toxic NY.


"Moms Clean Air Force applauds the broad support for the Child Safe Products Act", states Trisha Sheehan, Regional Field Manager for Moms Clean Air Force. "Toxic chemicals have no place in children's products and we thank the Retail Council of New York State for working to find a path forward for the Child Safe Products Act. We are urging our Senate, Assembly, and Governor to now make this bill a law."


"Toxic chemicals have no business in children’s products like toys, clothing, or car seats,” said Elie Ward, Director of Policy & Advocacy for NYS American Academy of Pediatrics. "Yet product makers have reported more than 5,000 types of children’s products that contain dangerous chemicals. New York must act now to protect our children’s health with a comprehensive approach, modeled after effective policies in other states and countries, she continued.”


“Advocates and retailers have worked hard to come together to craft legislation to  protect children’s health in New York.  Now the question is will the NY Senate & Assembly work together to pass this legislation?” said Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director, Citizens Campaign for the Environment, “A primary role of government is to protect public health, even when it’s inconvenient to industry.  It is past time that our elected officials make protecting children from toxic exposure a priority.”


“The Child Safe Products Act will help ensure the safety of New York’s pregnant women, infants and young children by limiting their exposure to certain toxic chemicals which are known to have a negative impact on the health and well-being of these highly vulnerable populations”, said Frank DeMeo, Director of March of Dimes New York Chapter. “March of Dimes is grateful to the many advocates and legislators who have worked together to advance this critical mission.”




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