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Amazon Must Remove Toxic School Supplies, Kid’s Jewelry from Marketplace Nationwide

This has LONG been an issue.


Amazon Must Remove Toxic School Supplies, Kid’s Jewelry from Marketplace Nationwide <--- Reddit Conversation


May 9 2019

AG investigation found some school supplies with more than 80 times legal limit of lead

SEATTLE — Attorney General Bob Ferguson today announced that Amazon will commit to nationwide corporate reforms after his office’s investigation found dozens of children’s school supplies sold on its online marketplace had illegal levels of toxic metals lead and cadmium.

Ferguson’s investigation revealed that individuals in Washington and across the country made at least 15,188 purchases of products with illegal levels of lead and cadmium from Amazon.com. When it learned of the results of the investigation, Amazon contacted the purchasers in early 2019 encouraging the disposal of the toxic items and provided more than $200,000 in refunds. To resolve the investigation without a lawsuit, Amazon entered into a nationwide legally binding agreement to block the sale of children’s schools supplies and jewelry on Amazon.com without lab reports and other proof from the sellers that the products are not toxic. In addition, Amazon will pay the Attorney General’s Office $700,000, which will be used to fund future environmental protection efforts, including future investigations into toxic children’s products.

“As a parent, when I buy products for my kids, I expect them to be safe,” said Ferguson. “All retailers must ensure that their products do not pose a threat to Washington children. If they don’t, they will hear from my office.”

“While so many of us benefit from the convenience of online retailers, the products they sell shouldn’t harm our families or the environment where we live,” said Department of Ecology Director Maia Bellon. “This is especially true with products marketed for kids. I appreciate the close collaboration with the Attorney General in supporting the enforcement of the Children’s Safe Product Act, and I’m proud of the long-term difference we at Ecology can make with our product testing efforts.”

Both state and federal laws prohibit the sale or distribution of children’s products that contain lead or cadmium above certain levels. Lead can cause a variety of neurological problems in children, and in large amounts, can lead to organ failure and death. The federal Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act prohibits levels of lead exceeding 100 parts-per-million (ppm) in any accessible component of a children’s product. Under state law, levels of cadmium, a metal known to cause cancer, cannot exceed 40 ppm.

The Attorney General’s Office, in partnership with the Washington State Department of Ecology, tested children’s school supplies for harmful levels of lead and cadmium in 2017 and 2018. The tests targeted products the two agencies suspected might contain toxic metals. In total, two rounds of tests identified 51 products sold on Amazon.com that tested positive for illegal levels of lead and cadmium. In the first round of testing, 16 of the 43 products from Amazon tested positive for illegal levels of toxic metals. In the second round of tests, the two agencies found that 35 of 41 products examined exceed the legal limits. The Department of Ecology paid for the first round of testing and the Attorney General’s Office funded the second round.

These items featured cartoon characters, plush exteriors and bright primary colors and were marketed to children younger than 12. In particular, some sellers’ pencil pouches had component parts containing approximately 8,500 ppm of lead — more than 80 times the legal limit. In one test, a pencil pouch contained more than 35 times the legal limit of lead and nearly 29 times the legal limit of cadmium. Amazon also performed its own tests on several products and confirmed that the levels were higher than those allowed by state and federal laws.

Children’s school supplies and jewelry found to exceed the legal limits of these toxic metals include:

Pencil pouches

Backpacks

Lunchboxes

Book covers

Bracelets

Necklaces

The legally binding agreement, filed in King County Superior Court, requires Amazon to discontinue the sale of any children’s school supplies or jewelry containing lead and cadmium levels exceeding those allowed by state and federal laws.

Amazon also will require all current sellers of these children’s products nationwide to provide certifications and lab testing from an accredited lab showing that their products are safe. The company identified approximately 18,000 sellers on its marketplace that offer around 900,000 individual children’s school supplies and jewelry products. These corporate reforms apply nationwide to all products of this type sold Image of pencil case that cadmium and lead above legal limits on Amazon.com, including those sourced from retail vendors (where Amazon is the seller of record) or sold by third-party marketplace sellers (where Amazon is not the seller of record).

Any future sellers must provide this certification before listing their products for sale. Moreover, if the Attorney General or Washington Department of Ecology advise Amazon of any children’s school supplies or jewelry that exceed safe levels, Amazon must remove the product from its online marketplace within two business days.

After Ferguson concluded his investigation and shared the results with Amazon, the online retailer contacted the consumers who purchased the more than 15,000 affected products, including nearly 600 of which sold to Washingtonians, and provided more than $200,000 in refunds. Amazon sent these notices to the email address associated with the purchaser’s account. Amazon also delivered this information to the federal Consumer Product Safety Commission to initiate a recall process.
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It's a very good sub-reddit and one I visit at least once every few days.
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Today an order arrived in one day.
Yesterday an order arrived in one day.
I'm loving this and have no gripes.
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If they want to contact me via an order that FBA fulfills... that is what the buyer seller messaging is for.
If I self-fulfill an order my business card is enclosed with my business number.

From what I've ascertained, this last year plus worth of sellers were harassing buyers by phone for feedback and more.
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* Amazon Central / Re: Jonesing for a free removal
« Last post by Southern Jewel's Fab Finds on May 11, 2019, 07:53:02 PM »
I've been doing the same thing.
I paid for some to be returned to me.
I paid to have Amazon dispose of them for me.
<shrug>
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* Amazon Central / Re: Jonesing for a free removal
« Last post by uncleleroy on May 10, 2019, 12:35:08 PM »
I just dumped a bunch of inventory. It isn't inventory that I could really sell anyways since it is 2019 dated and 2020 stuff will be out shortly (at least wholesale it will be). I'll let some sucker that loves to buy Amazon liquidation crap to resell on Amazon purchase all of it.  :h0035
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* Amazon Central / Re: Amazon customer phone number anonymization May 2, 2019
« Last post by uncleleroy on May 10, 2019, 12:30:47 PM »
It is okay, I do not need the customer's number. When the customer doesn't realize what is going on with this whole new anonymization thing and they refuse to answer the phone, nothing will get accomplished. Eventually customers might start blocking any number from Amazon's area code.

Speaking of which, I might just do that (block all calls from Amazon's area code). I am on my way to class yesterday and I notice that I missed this call from Amazon. I don't have any cases open I am thinking that Amazon might be using this same system to allow buyers to directly contact sellers via phone. If that is the case, then I am NOT a happy camper :(
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* Amazon Central / Re: Amazon plans to make Prime shipping one-day by default
« Last post by uncleleroy on May 10, 2019, 12:26:17 PM »
I recently purchased something from Amazon and it got here the next day. Like Donna, I received the option of free one day Prime shipping.

Not too shabby, I must say.
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According to the article:

"It's also a profitable area of business for the company. According to The Seattle Times, in 2018 Amazon pulled in nearly $43 billion in commissions and fees for fulfillment, shipping, and other seller services."

Ummm... that is a lot of money by anybody's standard. Even by our government.
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