Senator Lugar Can Hear Me! A Response to My Letter Protesting the CPSIA of 2008

My letter wasn't this longSo you may remember that a few weeks ago I looked up my Senator’s name and wrote a letter each to Senator Richard G. Lugar, Senator Evan Bayh, and Representative Baron P. Hill about the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA for short).

On Wednesday, Senator Lugar wrote me back. Here is his reply:

Dear Ms. Finn,

Thank you for sharing with me your concerns about legislation that was recently enacted to modernize the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).Β  I appreciate knowing of the difficulties individuals such as yourself and other small toymakers expect to face in complying with this new law.

While I supported efforts to make this legislation more responsive to the needs of small business during Senate consideration of this legislation, I supported final passage of the CPSC Reform Act in order to protect our families from harmful products.Β  In knowing your concerns about how this new law will affect small businesses, I have contacted the CPSC to communicate my interest in the implementation of this new law.Β  As this important process moves forward, I will have your concerns in mind.

Thank you, again, for contacting me.Β  I hope that you will continue to correspond with me on matters of importance to you and your family.

Sincerely, Richard G. Lugar, United States Senator

First of all, yay to Senator Lugar for being the only rep to respond so far, and to respond in a way that implies that he (or his intern) read and understood the content of my letter to him.

Second of all, yay to the clarification to the CPSIA that exempts resellers, thrift, and consignment stores from unreasonably burdensome requirements (Test ALL your used toys? Not anymore, but please be cautious, anyway) and yay to the proposed exemption of natural materials from unnecessary lead tests. These ought to actually solve my problems, since I craft for selling only out of recycled or natural materials.

I’m still up in arms about a few things, however. Senator Lugar responded to me as the small-time etsy and craft fair seller, but I’m much more the stay-at-home mom and natural parent, and I’d like Senator Lugar to better understand that I’m in protest of the CPSIA of 2008 as written not really because it might make it harder for me to earn my butter-and-egg money for the month, but because it would make it much harder for me to parent in the best way that I know how. I buy our clothes from thrift stores because I’m showing my children that we don’t need new things when there are already so many things in this world. I buy our toys made by other stay-at-home moms because I’m showing my children that things are best made with love and care in wholesome conditions and out of natural materials.

If Goodwill and etsy suddenly stopped selling children’s clothes and toys out of fear of the new law, where would I shop? Wal-mart?

Good thing Senator Lugar invited me to continue to correspond with him–I never turn down an invitation.

How do your reps feel about the CPSIA of 2008?

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