August 30, 2011
Urges Swift Final Vote in Assembly
Sacramento, CA—Consumers Union, the non-profit publisher of Consumer Reports, today commended the California State Senate for passing legislation that protects babies and toddlers from exposure to the hazardous chemical Bisphenol-A (BPA) in their food and drink containers. Assembly Bill 1319, the Toxin-Free Infants and Toddlers Act, bans the use of BPA in baby bottles and sippy cups. The legislation was authored by Assembly Member Betsy Butler (D-Marina Del Ray),
Due to changes in the language of the Senate version of the bill passed today, the measure must now return to the Assembly, which passed a stricter version in May, for a final “concurrence” vote before heading to Governor Brown to be signed into law.
“We applaud the State Senate for banning BPA in baby bottles and sippy cups for California’s most vulnerable citizens,” said Elisa Odabashian, West Coast Director of Consumers Union, co-sponsor of the bill. “We urge the Assembly to quickly finalize this bill so that parents will no longer worry about this hazardous chemical when purchasing these products for their children.”
Consumers Union has long warned of the dangers BPA in food containers, particularly for infants and small children whose developing bodies may metabolize the chemical more slowly. Its precautionary advice to consumers is based on more than 200 scientific studies that show clear links between BPA exposure and increased risk of cancer, diabetes, reproductive, neurological, and developmental disorders. Studies show that BPA is in the bloodstreams of more than 90 percent of the US population at levels that have shown harm in animal studies.
“Finally, the California Senate passed a BPA ban, and infants and parents around the state are cheering,” said Renee Sharp, California Director of Environmental Working Group, co-sponsor of the bill.
California joins a growing nationwide movement to ban BPA in children’s products due to the existing and growing body of scientific knowledge about the health risks. To date, BPA in children’s products has been banned in ten states, the European Union, Canada and China.
The bill passed despite fierce lobbying by the chemical and formula industries, which claim that BPA is safe and have spent millions to defeat this legislation. “We thank Assemblywoman Butler for her courage and leadership, and we applaud the Senate for choosing children over industry,” Odabashian said.
Naomi Starkman, 917.539.3924-c