“The Handmade Toy Alliance sends Board members to Committee Hearing on the CPSIA”

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The House Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection has scheduled a hearing for this Thursday, September 10th titled, “Consumer Product Safety Commission Oversight: Current Issues and a Vision for the Future”. Although only one witness – Chairperson Inez Tenenbaum of the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) – has been called, the Handmade Toy Alliance (HTA) will be sending two Board members to attend the hearing in the hopes that their voices will be heard. Efforts are currently underway to have Board member Jill Chuckas, owner of Crafty Baby (CT) speak on behalf of the members of the HTA, while fellow Board member, Kate Glynn, owner of A Child’s Garden and Impish (MA) will make the trip to attend the hearing and legislative visits.

“Regardless of whether or not I will be allowed to speak, I have prepared written testimony that I will submit to the committee,” stated Chuckas, Secretary of the HTA. “We have all worked so hard to have this hearing happen, and it is very important to be involved in the process and show that we will continue to work towards a solution that both keeps children safe and keeps our membership in business. Hand crafters were never intended to be put out of business. It is now time for Congress to amend the CPSIA so that we can continue to do what we love – create safe and lasting products for children.”

After the hearing, Chuckas and Glynn intend to meet with their members of Congress to further discuss the impact of the CPSIA. “We have really spent a great deal of time outreaching to members of Congress and just sharing our stories,” discussed Glynn. “For the most part, those we have spoken to are sympathetic to our cause. We’ve come to the point, though, where understanding needs to move to action and this first hearing is a step in that direction. The majority of the members of Congress that we have discussed this with have stated that if brought to the floor, they will vote for common sense changes to the CPSIA.”

The Handmade Toy Alliance is a grassroots alliance of 382 retail stores, toymakers and children's product manufacturers from across the country who want to preserve consumer access to unique handmade toys, clothes and all manner of small batch children's goods in the USA. Formed in November of 2008 in response to the CPSIA, HTA members are parents, grandparents and consumers who are passionate about their businesses as well as the safety of the children in their lives. While in support of the spirit of the law, the unintended consequences of the CPSIA have motivated members of the HTA to work to enact change at a federal level. More information at www.handmadetoyalliance.org.

Dan Marshall, co-owner
Peapods Natural Toys & Baby Care (St. Paul, MN)
The Handmade Toy Alliance
Tel. 651-238-8398

Jill Chuckas, Owner, Designer
Crafty Baby (Stamford, CT)
The Handmade Toy Alliance
Tel. 888-788-5168

Cecilia Leibovitz, President
Craftsbury Kids (Montpelier,VT)
The Handmade Toy Alliance
Tel. 802-223-7143

Rob Wilson, Vice President,
Challenge & Fun (Ashland, MA)
The Handmade Toy Alliance
Tel. 888-384-6200

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