The U.S. Government Reforms Child Product Safety Laws (Great Events from History II: Business and Commerce Series)
Article abstract: Federal legislation prevented the marketing of potentially harmful children’s products.
Summary of Event
During the 1970’s, the federal government of the United States undertook a concerted effort to improve the safety of toys and other products used by children. This effort was presaged by passage of the Child Protection Act of 1966, which prohibited sale of any hazardous substance that might cause harm to children, if it failed to display a warning label on either the product or its package. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was responsible for enforcing this act, which amended the Hazardous Substances Labeling Act of 1960. Prior to this act, signed into law on November 3, 1966, toy manufacturers were not held accountable for product safety or for reducing the risk of injuries sustained to children using their products.
On November 6, 1969, the Child Protection and Toy Safety Act was passed, extending the requirements of manufacturers by prohibiting any toxic, corrosive, or flammable toy or article that could cause personal injury or illness to children. In addition, if a product could cause an electrical, fire, or mechanical hazard to children, a label was to be displayed on the product or its package warning of its potential danger. The law gave the secretary of health, education, and welfare the authority to ban what the FDA classified as a hazardous substance.
(The entire section is 2030 words.)
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