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CPSC Plans Education Campaign
Vol. 851 
September 15, 2011

With regulators set to enforce a new set of rules at the start of 2012, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has announced an awareness campaign aimed at smaller manufacturers and sellers of children's products. The goal of the initiative, which has three stages, is to publicize third-party testing requirements for children's items. "Given the likely impact on those who manufacture or import toys that are covered by the toy safety standard, we believe that it is important to engage in a strategic outreach and education plan to the business community and other stakeholders," the CPSC said in a statement.

Under the new rules – which originated in the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act – manufacturers will be required to produce written certificates for each children's item they make to demonstrate compliance. Manufacturers must also ensure that their products are tested by a lab that has been accredited by the CPSC. Officially, regulators will enforce the new rules beginning with products that are manufactured after December 31, 2011.

In the first stage of its awareness efforts, the CPSC plans to advertise in general interest and trade publications, complemented by the launch of a social media campaign. In the second phase, the CPSC expects to publish a list of frequently asked questions designed to offer detailed advice and step-by-step accounts to help manufacturers stay in compliance with the new standards. Finally, in stage three, the commission is planning to send members of its staff to trade shows and conferences to deliver presentations, as funding permits.

The CPSC has invited comments on how to best organize its education campaign. Remarks should be submitted by October 21 at www.regulations.gov.

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