Enforcement Guidelines for Children’s Product Safety Published in Washington State, US
Washington’s Department of Ecology (DOE) has recently published an enforcement guideline for compliance with lead, cadmium and phthalates falling under the Children’s Safe Products Act (CSPA).
Sharper Statewide Scrutiny for Childcare Articles
The DOE will enforce state limits for children’s products that are not covered by a limit under the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA).
When the US Federal Government’s ‘Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA)’  was enacted in 2008, it substantially preempted  the requirements for lead, phthalates and cadmium falling under Chapter RCW 70.240.020 of Washington’s Children’s Safe Products Act (CSPA) .
Phthalate Content Addressed in Document
On February 12, 2016, Washington’s DOE published an enforcement guidance document  to assist industry on whether a particular children’s product is subject to continuing enforcement for lead, cadmium and phthalates under RCW 70.240.020. According to the guideline, the DOE continues to investigate for violations of lead, cadmium and phthalates in children’s products falling under the CSPA. It also provides important guidance for meeting these requirements, including but not limited to:
Washington’s standard for lead, cadmium and phthalates are for children’s products within the scope of RCW 70.240.010. These are:
- Child car seats
- Cosmetics for children under the age of 12
- Jewelry for children under the age of 12
- Products to help a child with sucking or teething, to facilitate sleep, relaxation, or the feeding of a child
Washington’s limits for lead, cadmium and phthalates in children’s products cover a broader range of products and are also generally more stringent than the CPSIA limits
The Washington standard for lead, cadmium and phthalates cannot be enforced for products to which a federal standard applies.
Lead content. There is considerable overlap between the products covered by the federal lead limits and children’s products under the Washington law.
Cadmium content. Children’s products such as childcare articles, clothing, cosmetics (other than cosmetics that are not part of a toy), footwear and jewelry are subject to Washington’s CSPA limits.
Phthalates. Children’s products such as clothing, footwear and cosmetics are subject to Washington’s CSPA limits.
Highlights of the enforcement guideline and a comparison with CPSIA are summarized in Table 1 in the latest Safeguards bulletin.
 Washington state’s enforcement guidance document
About SGS Services for the Consumer Goods and Retail Industry
Throughout its global network of laboratories, SGS is able to provide a range of services, including analytical testing and consultancy for lead, cadmium, phthalates and other standards such as CPSIA for children’s products for Washington, the US and international markets.
For further information, please contact an SGS expert.
SGS Consumer Goods and Retail
Hing Wo Tsang
Global Hardlines Information and Innovation Manager
SGS Hong Kong Limited
1/F On Wui Centre
25 Lok Yip Road
Fanling, N.T., Hong Kong, China
t: (+852) 2774 7420
SGS is the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 85,000 employees, SGS operates a network of over 1,800 offices and laboratories around the world.
phone: +49-351-500 95 74
fax: +49-351-500 95 71