Agency ban targets lead in kids' jewelry

Dec. 29, 2006 at 8:09 AM
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WASHINGTON, Dec. 29 (UPI) -- A U.S. regulatory agency has taken the first steps to ban children's jewelry containing small amounts of lead.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission voted to move ahead in its process to ban children's jewelry containing more than 0.06 percent lead by weight. The agency said it approved an advance notice of proposed rulemaking, the first of its three-step process.

"Lead is toxic to children and reducing lead poisoning in children is a priority for CPSC," said commission Acting Chairwoman Nancy Nord.

The commission will continue to enforce its interim metal jewelry testing policy while current rulemaking is pending. The interim policy involves a two-step testing process; the proposed rule would simplify the approach.

Products intended for children are banned under the Federal Hazardous Substances Act if they contain hazardous levels of accessible lead.

The commission has issued more than a dozen recalls of children's metal jewelry because of lead poisoning risks since 2004, it said. Lead poisoning in children is associated with behavioral and growth problems and learning disabilities.

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