Art materials are so ubiquitous in our homes and schools that we take for granted they are safe. Yet they may contain dangerous chemicals such as solvents, heavy metals, phthalates and preservatives like formaldehyde and parabens. Exposure can occur by ingestion, inhalation or absorption through skin. Follow these guidelines to keep art projects safe and fun.
Years ago, I found myself with an empty spot in my living room. I had recently purchased a couch, yet my nose knew as soon as the new sofa was delivered that it would not make its home with me. Why had the recently purchased sofa not worked out? Could I find one I would be happy to bring home? So began the quest for a healthy couch.
After one 105-day regular session, two special sessions and despite strong scientific evidence, tremendous public support and a coalition of over 50 public health, religious and fire service organizations, the legislature failed to adopt a comprehensive ban on ineffective toxic flame-retardants used in children’s products and furniture.
School is out and so is the sun, a winning combination. Summer toys rely heavily on PVC vinyl, such as beach balls and inflatable pool toys. Read on for fun ideas using safer plastic toys, simple toys, or even, no toys at all.
We strongly believe consumers have the right to make informed decisions about the products they bring into their homes, and what they put into their bodies. These principles are what led to our decision to support Initiative 522, which will require the labeling of genetically engineered foods in Washington state.
Last week, the non-partisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) provided compelling evidence that our federal law on toxic chemicals, the 37 year-old Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), is in terrible shape and doing a disservice to Americans’ health.
We’re excited to welcome Julie Gonzales-Corbin as our newest WTC board member! A longtime WTC volunteer, Julie is a woman of many talents. In order to introduce her properly, we asked her a few questions:
Elsie Sorgenfrei was one of our longest standing anti-pesticide warriors. She never gave up and was always vigilant and working to improve the world around us. She will be truly missed by those of us who had the joy to know and work with her. Washington Toxics Coalition is honored to receive a bequest to further Elsie’s legacy.
With warming soil temperatures and last frost, the month of May shouts garden time! Children can be helpful garden companions and there is much in the garden to delight them and you.
We are extremely disappointed and frustrated that the Toxic-Free Kids and Families Act (ESHB 1294) didn’t make it out of the Senate in the final hours of the regular legislative session. The Senate never took up the strong House version of the bill, nor did it accept reasonable compromises offered by the bill sponsors. Massive last-minute lobbying by the American Chemistry Council, the Association of Washington Business and Walmart resulted in the Senate letting the bill die.
Spring is in the air. That means GiveBIG, our community’s biggest giving day of the year, is right around the corner. We know you want to donate where your dollar will do the most good. That’s why we are giving you eight reasons to GiveBIG to Washington Toxics Coalition on May 15th.
Last week, we published an analysis of reports filed by the makers of kids’ products on toxic chemicals in products they make. In those reports, one company stood out, not just because it was among the top five companies reporting the most products, but because it was the most powerful single company that worked to defeat a Washington state bill to ban toxic flame retardants in children's products.
Naps give our little ones much needed time to recharge. As parents and teachers, we want our children to rest without lying in a bed of harmful chemicals. But recently, Washington Toxics Coalition found flame retardants in nap mats sold for use in childcare.
Last Wednesday, the Senate voted on the Toxic-Free Kids and Families Act (ESHB 1294). Unfortunately, it passed a completely inadequate version of the bill that will not protect kids, fire fighters or the environment. But in good news, the House refused to accept the Senate’s weak bill and has asked to negotiate with the Senate.
One of the most frustrating things we see when we are investigating the use of harmful chemicals in everyday consumer products is a disturbing trend we call the Toxic Treadmill.
In good news, the Toxic-Free Kids and Families Act passed out of the Senate Energy, Environment & Telecommunications Committee on Tuesday shortly before the deadline! This means the bill will continue through the legislative process and now awaits a vote on the Senate floor.
Sometimes our campaigns to protect kids from harmful toxic chemicals feel a lot like the movie Groundhog Day. That’s not to say that the protections we are seeking are old news, because they aren’t. Washington state has put in place groundbreaking laws to change the way toxic chemicals in products are regulated. These policies have not only helped improve our health, but have resulted in changes in the marketplace and provided much needed momentum for federal reform.
Of course, babies shouldn't be exposed to poisonous chemicals, but neither should guys like me. I don’t smoke, work out a lot (I’m part of a medieval combat group), and try to eat healthy. Why should sitting on my family’s furniture be more dangerous than wrestling? Why should consumer products be cancer risks when there are plenty of safer ways to prevent fires?
The toxic treadmill has struck Graco, the manufacturer of car seats and other kids products, who was praised last year for pledging to stop using the toxic flame retardant chlorinated Tris in its products. Now the company has disclosed to Washington state that they are using another harmful chemical flame retardant called TBBPA in their products.
Like most young people during these tough economic times, I have been struggling in the job market and am currently without health insurance. This means I worry about my health more than many people, because an unexpected illness could have huge financial consequences.