The EcoWaste Coalition calls for pull out of unsafe school supplies containing lead and cadmium.
The watch group pointed out that these school supplies, which are meant to help kids with their education and development, can actually be damaging to their brain due to the presence of high concentration of lead and cadmium.
The group sought the removal of unsafe school supplies after tests confirmed high concentrations of cadmium and lead in crayons, watercolor sets, backpacks and raincoat procured by the group and sent to a private laboratory for analysis.
As per laboratory test reports, the following school supplies and brands were found out to contain high concentration of lead and cadmium:
- Artex Fine Water Colors (yellow cake) – contains lead
- MPC Classique Water Colors (yellow cake) – contains lead
- Fairyland Crayons (orange stick) – contains lead
- McQueen backpack – contains lead
- “Ben 10” polyvinyl chloride (PVC) raincoat – contains lead and cadmium
- Backpacks with “Frozen” and “Hello Kitty” characters – contains cadmium
The above mentioned products contain concentration of the said chemicals above the allowable and regulatory limit. In fact, some of these school supply brands, like the Artex Fine water colors and MPC Classique and Fairyland art materials, have already been on the list of prohibited products on sale by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) but are still being sold in the market.
Lead can cause severe damage to the brain and kidneys and, ultimately, death; while cadmium have toxic effects on the kidneys, the skeletal and respiratory systems, and is classified as a human carcinogen (causes cancer).
To avoid exposure of children unsafe school supplies, EcoWaste Coalition urged parents to consider these buying tips:
Do not buy school supplies like art materials banned by the FDA due to their toxic contents.
Avoid buying PVC-made school supplies that may contain prohibited or restricted toxic additives.
Refrain from buying painted school supplies unless certified as lead-safe.
Check the product label, including hazard warnings and safety precautions.
Choose school supplies that are notified/registered with the FDA, and supplied, distributed and sold by FDA-licensed establishments.