We Do It All For Our Babies, So Can We Start By Saving Their Lives?
The best thing that ever happened to me was the day I became a father. Today, I am blessed with three little ones--well, maybe they aren't as little as I'd like them to be, but I digress. As a parent, I always want the best for them and It's my job to make sure they are safe.
Of course, there is all that goes with it: waking up at all hours of the night, the worrying, and when they were little making sure they had a safe place to sleep. The last part I remember because I stumbled on a little something earlier that opened the floodgates of my memory.
How do we know a product is safe for infants?
There is a federal regulation under Section 104 of the Consumer Product Safety Act, also known as "Danny's Law", that requires mandatory safety standards to be set for infant and toddler products. If there is a standard set for a specific type of product, then that product can't be sold unless it meets those safety standards. But what happens when a type of product doesn't have a set of safety standards? It can be sold on the market, regardless of whether it is safe or not.
For example: inclined sleepers and in-bed sleepers.
That's right, these products that are bought and by parents for their infant children were not safe to use for sleep. And there were no safety standards in place that would prevent more of these dangerous products from reaching the market.
To make a long story short, a group of experts have put together a set of safety standards for infant sleep products called the Bassinet Standard. And these safety standards will be put to a final vote by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission on Tuesday, June 2nd. If the vote is passed, it will ALL infant sleep products will have to to meet a mandatory safety standard in order to reach the market.
But according to a press release I received from Michelle Barry with Safe Infant Sleep there are a LOT of people who have tried to dissuade against the final vote. This puzzles me, why would you be against something that makes things safer for babies who clearly cannot fend for themselves?
Amarillo Already Has Problems With Healthy Births
Here in the Texas Panhandle, we already have issues with low birth weight, and according to a Texas DSHS study conducted in 2019 we also have an issue with SIDS. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome is actually the 2nd leading cause of death for infants under 6 months of age and the Amarillo area is coincidentally 2nd worst in the state in this respect.
What the ruling would do to protect babies
There are already a lot of common sense things you can do to help prevent SIDS like keeping the crib clear of unnecessary items. Think ABC:
A: Alone - Your baby is best alone, keep pets or stuffed animals away
B: Back - Always on their back, if they roll over on their own that's perfectly fine
C: Crib - Keep them in the crib. Bassinets and the Pack N' Play are fine too (as long as they are clear of play items
There's some more good information about the ABC's here. The ruling would add 1, 2 and 3 to this:
Getting rid of inclined sleep items for infants.
Require any item that is marketed for infant sleep to pass one of the infant sleep safety standards.
If a manufacturer's product doesn't pass, they then have the opportunity to redesign it to meet these standards
Common sense stuff right? Here's how you can help or at least have your voice heard
Safe Sleep Means Safe Babies, Here’s How You Can Help
Are you comfortable with parents unknowingly buying a product that could be harmful to their infant? No? Then why not be a part of what keeps these babies and their parents safe from harm?
The best thing you can do is to call or write the members of CPSC to ask they vote in favor of the safe sleep ruling that will happen on Wednesday, June 2. I did some poking around and found that the best way to do it is to go through this link right here. They've got a template set up for you to type in your name and then press send.
Hold on, just in case you missed the link above:
For more information and to get help with material you can contact Safe Infant Sleep's email address. It's not often that I pay attention to the press releases about products and consumer safety (and we get a lot), but this one is different.
This one is for the safety of our babies. That hits close to home for me, as I think it will for you.