We can attempt to teach the things that one might imagine the earth would teach us: silence, humility, holiness, connectedness, courtesy, beauty, celebration, giving, restoration, obligation and wildness.
David Orr from "Earth in Mind"

Dec 17, 2008

Law Indangers Artisans Business through Cost

As most of you know, not only do I make things by hand but I also work at a shop that sells handmade toys and clothing. Much of the products we have in the store will be effected by the Consumer Protection Safety Act. In an effort to help countless of artisans across the country I ask that you take the time to copy the following letter, fill it in and send it to your congressmen. I understand many people's fears about tainted toys but this law requires testing for every toy (at the price of a few thousand dollars a toy) many of these small time producers never make that much on any single item. So please help! Thank you Uncommon Grace for the link.

From: [your name and address]

To: [your congress person or senator]

Re: Changes needed to the Consumer Product Improvement Act (CPSIA) to Save Handmade Toys in the USA

Dear [your congress person or senator],

Like many people, I was deeply concerned by the dangerous and poisonous toys that large Chinese toy manufacturers have been selling to our nations families. And, I was very pleased that Congress acted quickly to protect America's children by enacting the CPSIA.

However, I am very concerned that the CPSIA's mandates for third party testing and labeling will have a dramatic and negative effect on small toymakers in the USA, Canada, and Europe, whose toy safety record has always been exemplary.

Because of the fees charged by Third Party testing companies, many toymakers, especially makers of unique and beautiful wooden toys from Maine to Oregon will be driven out of business. Their cottage workshops simply do not make enough money to afford the $4,000 price tag per toy that Third Party testers are charging.

I urge you to quickly rewrite the CPSIA so that toys made in batches of less than 5,000 units per year or manufactured within the USA and trusted countries with established toy safety regimes such as Canada and the European Union be held exempt from third party testing requirements. Such toys could still be subject to random auditing by the CPSC.

If you feel that testing should still be required, then the CPSC should be made to offer free testing services for USA toymakers and importers from Europe or Canada with revenues less than one million dollars.

These toy makers have earned and kept the public's trust. They provide jobs for hundreds and quality playthings for thousands. Their unique businesses should be protected. Please visit www.handmadetoyalliance.org to learn more about this issue.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.


[your name]

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