Lead Scare Hits Kids Clothes

Cynthia Dermody

doll clothes

Photo by candeelady

A new consumer protection law may greatly limit moms in the kids and baby clothes department starting next month. That's because the law will require product makers or store owners selling products for kids under 12 -- secondhand kids clothing from thrift stores included -- to test them for the potentially dangerous chemicals lead and phthalates before being sold or re-sold.

High lead levels have been found in children's jewelry, but also in backpacks and ponchos. Lead can also lurk in buttons or charms and within appliques that have been added to fabric.

Obviously, your local mom-and-pop thrift store doesn't have the financial or scientific means to test all those used snow boots and the multitude of Gap sweatsuits it resells, so legally they'll have to dump them.

While well-intentioned, the law is also causing an uproar among makers and devotees of handmade toys, many of which are made in the USA and pose no safety threat whatsoever.


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++Is this new law a good thing or much ado about nothing? Will it cause you to think twice about buying used clothing for your children?

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