[AL-Directors] The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act and Libraries

Jim Scheppke jim.b.scheppke at state.or.us
Fri Jan 9 12:27:12 PST 2009

Dear Colleagues:
We have heard concerns from librarians about the implications of the new
Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act that goes into effect in February
and is designed to prevent children from being exposed to lead.

Today the ALA sent a letter to Congress requesting that children's books be
exempted from the Act. The ALA is concerned that children's books in
libraries may need to be tested for lead content under the new law. You can
read about it here:


There is also concern that book sales held by Friends groups and other
library support groups would need to test children's books for lead content.
This press release from the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission appears
to indicate that the new law does not apply to "sellers of used children's
products," so there may not be an issue for Friends book sales:


I wanted you all to be aware of this issue.  I'd recommend that librarians
monitor the ALA Washington Office website for further developments and
consult with your policy makers and legal counsel as to the appropriate
course of action.

Jim Scheppke, State Librarian
Oregon State Library
250 Winter St. NE
Salem, OR 97301
(fax) 503-585-8059
jim.b.scheppke at state.or.us

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