Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Hand-Me-Downs Are Going to Be Illegal

Yep. I am so not kidding. As of Feb 11, new CPSC standards are going into effect and they are making HUGE changes in the sale, re-sale and even GIFTING of children's clothing. Basically, it will be illegal to sell or GIVE a childrens item that you have not tested for lead according to the new standards. The fines are very high and the CPSC is serious about this law as an attempt to save face from all the lead recalls of late. So in theory, you give a bag of baby clothes to your neighbor that your child has outgrown. Illegal. Is she going to call the feds on you? Probably not but if she was mad at you for something else she could.

This law will force Goodwill and all for-profit re-sale shops out of business plus wreak havoc for Ebay sellers and Etsy sellers who make custom children's clothing and jewelry sets. It is not enough that your supplier tested the material you use. YOU need to test them also. Each test costs upwards of $500 and each item will need to be tested.

I'm mostly torqued off about this as an Ebay seller but it also seems crazy to make hand-me-downs illegal. It also means that retailers will need to throw out tons of clothing that is not purchased by Feb 10 b/c they can no longer sell it or donate it. The law went through Congress very quickly and needs to be reviewed. I'm all for testing to protect our kids from lead and other things but this seems a bit extreme.

8 comments:

ms leo said...

Jen, here is some more information on this law, and a link to vote that it be presented to President Obama:

http://coolmompicks.com/savehandmade/

http://www.change.org/ideas/view/save_handmade_toys_from_the_cpsia

I think it is definitely important for this law to be reviewed. It totally shows a lack of thought...

Traci said...

I just read about this today too and I think it's a bit nuts! It will definitely not help the economy if places like Goodwill or Once Upon a Child etc have to close. Man-now I'm wishing I would have sold all the baby stuff at the garage sale last summer!

candi said...

ok this is seriously WHACKED!! I am going to have naked kids if I can't buy their clothes at thrift stores and garage sales.
Maybe that is how we should protest. Have all of the kids in the world go naked until they fix their stupidity!!

kkoois said...

i'm totally calling the feds on you next time you give me a bag of hand-me-ups for elise.

Jen said...

Thanks for the links, Liz. I've already read those and many many more going around my Ebay chat board! :-)

The hard thing is so much of the law is "legal speak" and no one is sure how this is going to play out on a practical level. Are the feds going to arrest me for giving baby clothes to my niece and nephew? No, but the way the law is written, they could. Like I said, it bothers me most because it threatens my income. Ebay is how I pay for Christian school tuition but I'm also bothered by the inclusion of donated items. I give lots of sets to Goodwill and a local women's shelter and now that's illegal too? Nuts.

Tena said...

I still just do NOT understand this. I have a mega garage sale every spring and do super well - that is going to be out of the question now, too??? Hateful.

candi said...

check out this link
I think we are ok!!

http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml09/09086.html

The Woman said...

that's just crap