Safety V. Profit

Let me summarize “After Long Battle, Safer Cribs,” which appeared in the July 15 issue of the New York Times.

New crib safety regulations — the first in 30 years — went into effect on June 28. Drop-side cribs are prohibited from being sold, crib slats and mattress supports must be strengthened, and crib hardware must be more durable.

These standards were passed by the Consumer Product Safety Commission by a 3-2 vote along partisan lines. Opponents say passage was rushed, leaving manufacturers and retailers with unsalable inventory. Supporters, among them parents of babies killed by defective cribs, say swift action is justified.

I bring this up not only to applaud the passage of regulations that are described as the toughest in the world. I also want to point out that this article appeared in the business section of the paper. It’s where I get a lot of my news about food safety, air and water pollution, and measures to protect children’s health.

It always boils down to welfare versus profitability. Clearly, the well-being of my son and unborn baby is under attack by those seeking to protect business interests over the rights of children to be safe and healthy.

See also: Lead in Toys (another 3-2 partisan vote) and the Environmental Health News article, “Protecting our children from prophets (and profits) of doubt.”

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