Prisma Health Children’s Hospital-Midlands Shares U.S. Public Interest Research Group’s 34th annual Trouble in Toyland Report

Staff Report From Columbia CEO

Monday, December 2nd, 2019

Prisma Health Children’s Hospital-Midlands, in its role to help keep children safe in the community, is sharing the U.S. Public Interest Research Group’s (U.S. PIRG) 34th annual Trouble in Toyland Report.

“Toys have become safer over the last three decades, but dangerous and toxic toys are still on store shelves. With that in mind, parents need to be vigilant to keep their kids healthy and safe,” said Grace Brombach, U.S. PIRG Education Fund’s Consumer Watchdog Associate. “Manufacturers and regulators must do more to ensure all toys are safe before they end up in a child’s hands.”

Prisma Health Health Children’s Hospital pediatricians Jeff Holloway, M.D., and Hollie Edwards, M.D., discussed the list of recalled toys and provided tips for shoppers to help them avoid purchasing unsafe toys for loved ones this holiday season.

Holloway said, “We should be able to trust that the toys we buy are safe, however, until that is the case, parents and toy shoppers should know that recalled toys still can be found online and may already be in children’s homes. It is illegal to sell a recalled product under Consumer Product Safety Commission rules, but the report shows that recalled toys are being sold to unsuspecting consumers online. The Trouble in Toyland report includes a full list of recalled toys, shopping tips and recommendations for what consumers should do if they have the recalled toys in their homes.”

For more than 30 years, Trouble in Toyland has issued toy safety guidelines and has provided examples of toys currently on store shelves that pose potential safety hazards to small children. Key findings from this year’s report include:

Detectable dangers: Parents can recognize numerous dangerous products just by looking at them. A few common threats include choking hazards, balloons, loud noises, magnets and toys marketed to adults.

Hidden toxics: In the last year, toys and other children’s products containing lead, cadmium and boron were found for sale -- posing a health risk parents cannot see.

Recalled Toys: The last line of defense is our nation’s recall system. But, U.S. PIRG Education Fund researchers were able to purchase some items which were recalled over a year ago. Parents should check to see if a toy has been recalled by visiting recalls.gov.

Edwards added, “The continued presence of these hazards in toys highlights the need for constant vigilance by parents, grandparents and gift-givers to ensure that children do not end up playing with unsafe toys. We also want parents and toy shoppers to look carefully at toys they may already own and toys that are in the homes of friends and family they may be visiting during the holidays.”