Here at Workerette I've attempted to alert you to some of the many recalls issued over the past few months - and frankly, I've not even touched on half of them! I'm sure you, like me, are getting sick of seeing new recalls in the news pretty much daily. From the candles we light to the food we give our pets to the toys our kids play with to the food on our own tables - it's beyond a basic quality control issue. The product recall problem is rampant, and to those with a bent toward conspiracy theory, it's not looking great for China, frankly.
If you're growing more concerned about recalls rather than just feeling like there are so many we might as well ignore them unless we own an item, you're not alone. I recently receive an email from Mothering magazine which included a link to a new program from Consumer Union (the publishers of the non-profit Consumer Reports magazine): the Not in My Cart! advocacy movement.
From the folks at Mothering:
More than 20 million children's toys have been recalled this year, alone. Many more dangerous, imported products may be sitting on store shelves around the country right now. The dangerous combination of lax safety regulations, a lack of enforcement, and a shortage of federal inspectors can only result in more recalls.
Note that number, gals; that is ONLY the TOYS! That's not even including the other items such as tainted dog food, ground beef yanked off the shelves (and plenty of that went to schools and was eaten before the producer recalled it!) - the list of recalls that are upsetting, not merely inconvenient, goes on.
You know, in certain cases recalls come up because of lack of clear instructions or misuse by consumers. The Wyeth children's medicine recall, for example, is not due to a problem with the medicines themselves - they are not tainted or improperly made. It is merely the dosage cups, which do not have a certain dosage amount on them, that have caused the recall; the company is voluntarily creating better cups and will have the products back out on shelves soon. Same with the Bumbo seat recall I vented about recently. That sort of "whoops, we forgot to work to the lowest common denominator with our product" doesn't bother me, though it does make me wonder about consumers sometimes. ;-)
It's when we get into numerous toys that are covered with lead paint above the legal limit - food that can cause illness or death - well, you can see why those are the ones that really chafe my tuckus, I'm sure.
Take a look at the Not in My Cart! program and see if it expresses what you're feeling. If it does, sign on and let your legislators know you won't put up with this problem - that someone, somewhere, needs to stick up for consumers (especially those who cannot speak for themselves - our progeny and our pets)!