CEH Executive Director Michael Green, Wall Street Journal, December 31, 2009

Anne Northup notes that the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act
(CPSIA) passed with bipartisan support, so it is surprising to see her
partisan attack on this children's health protection law ("There Is No Joy in Toyland,"
op-ed, Dec. 24). She states that lead in metals used in children's
products is not "bioavailable," and thus cannot harm children. This
will come as a shock to Juanna Graham, whose son died after swallowing
a metal charm. At least eight other children have suffered lead
poisoning after sucking on or swallowing small lead pieces from toys or

Ms. Northup also errs in stating that lead is not absorbable in
materials other than paint. Over the past five years we have found high
levels of lead in numerous vinyl children's items, including baby bibs,
lunchboxes, rain gear, toys, and others. Independent lab tests showed
that lead in these products can wipe off and expose children to unsafe
levels of lead.

Michael Green

Executive Director

Center for Environmental Health

Oakland, Calif.


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