Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Please Sign the Formaldehyde Petition

Please take a moment to sign the petition to Restrict/Label Formaldehyde in Textile Products. Why is this so important and why should you care? Because currently the USA does not have any safety standard in place when it comes to formaldehyde limits in textiles. ANYTHING GOES HERE! Recently, baby clothing made in China was tested for formaldehyde levels and they were found to be 900 (!) times what is considered safe by the World Health Organization.

Meanwhile, please take care to wash any new clothes before putting it on your baby or anyone else in your family for that matter (it will remove some but not all of the formaldehyde), that is the least you can do to prevent formaldehyde from absorbing into and irritating the skin. Of course, if you can afford it you are better off buying clothing made from organic textiles until the 'powers above' have the decency to pass legislation to label it.

Formaldehyde is a toxic gas that can be dangerous in our children’s environments for many reasons.

“These toxic fumes, even in small amounts, can cause nose and eye irritation (burning, itchy, tearing, and sore throat) in children as well as in adults. Long-term exposure and high concentrations of formaldehyde can lead to cancer. In animal studies, rats exposed to high levels of formaldehyde in air developed nose cancer. The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has determined that formaldehyde may reasonably be anticipated to be a carcinogen.” 1

Do you see now why you should be concerned about this being present in clothing at 900 times the 'safe' level?

European Countries like Austria, Finland, Germany, Norway and Netherlands have laid down national legislation restricting the presence of formaldehyde in textile products. The US needs to get with the times here as well. This needs to be done for the health and well-being of our children and consumers at large.

1 http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/tfacts111.html#bookmark02

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