Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Small Businesses and the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act

Aquinas and More Sets Up CPSIA Central to Help Other Retailers

Colorado Springs, CO (January 20, 2009) – Aquinas and More Catholic Goods is announcing a new section of its blog, CPSIA Central, to help educate others about the CPSIA. This new law will affect Aquinas and More and many other retailers in the country, and the company is very concerned about the livelihood of other retailers who may not yet be well-informed about the law.

On February 10, 2009 the new law will go into effect and threaten many independent and small businesses. This law, the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), mandates that every children's product – toys, books, apparel, CDs, and much more – marketed to and used by children aged 12 and younger be tested at an approved lab for a variety of toxins, including lead. This law is devastating to many small businesses who deal with or make children's items, because it requires testing to be done and documentation available by February 10 for retailers, or the products will have to be destroyed at that time. Testing isn't cheap – it can range from a couple hundred dollars to $4000 per item. Failure to comply with this law can result in a minimum fine of $100,000, and possibly even five years in prison. Retailers, suppliers, and manufacturers are all affected and responsible.

Somehow, this law is going largely unnoticed by the media and by many who will be directly affected once the law goes into effect. Aquinas and More Catholic Goods has set up a special section on its blog, Musings From a Catholic Bookstore, to help others educate themselves about this far-reaching law. CPSIA Central can be found here . This page was set up because, while calling vendors to see what they were doing about CPSIA, Aquinas and More discovered that the majority had never even heard of this law and so are obviously unprepared. In the interest of helping as many as possible understand and prepare for this law, CPSIA Central includes important information and polls to gauge how this will affect people.

Aquinas and More has also included a list of vendors who are certified and those who have been contacted but are not yet certified. As most people have been blindsided by this law only recently, very few are compliant. Of the 27 vendors we have contacted at the time of writing this release, only two are prepared with products being tested and documentation forthcoming. 16 of those 27 are currently researching the law, and were largely unaware of it prior to our call. Aquinas and More has yet to hear back from nine of those who have been contacted. Because there has been so little information about this law in the media or anywhere else, most vendors will most likely not be prepared with the necessary testing and documentation in time for the deadline, which is now only three weeks away.

For more information about the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, check CPSIA Central frequently, as it will continue to be updated with the latest information. If you are a Christian vendor or retailer, please send Aquinas and More any updated information you might have so they can keep the information current on CPSIA Central.
I have read about this law recently and it almost seems tailor made to put small businesses out of business altogether. I realize that the overall goal is laudable but surely there is a better way than slapping down a bandaid like this.

Check out Aquinas and More's page and pass it on.

No comments:

Post a Comment