According to a new study, lots of children’s school supplies have dangerously high levels of chemicals called phthalates.
Not just a tongue-twisting word, these chemicals have been linked to “birth defects, infertility, early puberty, asthma, ADHD, obesity, and diabetes.” So – and quite sensibly, we might add! – children’s toys with high concentrations of phthalates were banned in the USA in 2008.
But a new study from our friends at the Center for Health, Environment & Justice (with Empire State Consumer Project) found phthalates at dangerously high, levels in loads of children’s products: backpacks, binders, rainboots, etc.
As an example, one backpack showing WWE Wrestler “The Rock” was found to contain more than 12 times the legal limit of DnOP, a phthalate. If it were a child’s toy – something legally regulated because it’s likely that a child might put it in his or her mouth – it would be illegal. But instead it’s regulated as “school supplies” and, somehow, it’s totally fine to have such high levels of chemicals.
Head to their website to download the wallet-sized guide, or to read more about which plastic products for kids are safe.
And they’re also looking at legislative solutions in communities across the country – so read up and see what role you can play!
All images courtesy Center for Health, Environment & Justice.