JPMA Seeks Bumper Pad Standard, Supports Parental Choice and Opposes Unfounded Recommendations Against Crib Bumper Pad Use

May 11, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

           

The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association Seeks Bumper Pad Standard, Supports Parental Choice and Opposes Unfounded Recommendations Against Crib Bumper Pad Use

Association files a petition requesting definition and regulation to distinguish hazardous pillow-like crib bumper pads from non-hazardous traditional crib bumpers.

MOUNT LAUREL, NJ May 11, 2012—The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) petitioned the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) this week to adopt a rule to define and distinguish between hazardous “soft” pillow-like crib bumper pads and traditional crib bumpers. The petition further outlined that parents will benefit from a clarifying standard when shopping in the marketplace for products that protect babies from limb entrapment, abrasions and contusions when safely placed in cribs on their backs to sleep.

JPMA is dedicated to promoting the safe use of juvenile products and affirms that when used according to manufacturer’s instructions, traditional crib bumpers prevent head injuries and limb entrapment, the leading causes of crib injuries in children today.

“Our fear is that if there is an elimination of crib bumpers, parents will still want the product and will begin creating their own makeshift bumper as a protective barrier from the tight slat/spindle dimensions and hard wooden surface of the crib slats, said Michael Dwyer CAE, Executive Director of JPMA. “We are already seeing early evidence of this in social networking forums and through injury reports, and parents need to be able to trust products that are currently available on store shelves that have passed rigorous safety and reliability tests.”

Data demonstrates that the message is not always reaching the child rearing population or perhaps is being ignored. As a result,  JPMA is concerned that any recommendations that results in the de facto elimination of safe and useful products specifically designed for infant use, will have unintended consequences. Experience in cities such as Milwaukee, Baltimore and Chicago suggests that this is a significant problem that needs to be addressed.

In its 50 year history, JPMA has dedicated tremendous resources to public safety awareness campaigns assisting parents in their baby product research. The landmark 2010 Safe Sleep awareness campaign continues to help parents today design a safe and functional nursery. Parents can find tips and recommendations when outfitting baby’s sleep environment at www.cribsafety.org and through safety tip inserts provided with product packaging for the last decade. JPMA is urging other organizations, physicians and companies to dedicate resources to awareness campaigns to help parents make informed decisions.

“Manufacturers are committed to working with CPSC and other Stakeholders to develop a mandatory standard for crib bumper pads,” said Dwyer. “The standard process, led by ASTM is currently underway for infant bedding and crib bumpers. JPMA believes that the ASTM crib bumper dynamic requirements, which were supported by the subcommittee, can now provide a reaonable basis for a federal crib bumper performance standard that distinquishes safe products and allows consumers choices.”

ASTM, formerly the American Society for Testing and Materials, facilitates discussions to establish voluntary standards for a variety of industries including juvenile products. Manufacturers, along side consumer advocates, government agencies and engineers, have been working to define the crib bumper standard to help parents in their selection process.

Currently balloted items include enhancements to the warning statements to ensure consumers are properly using and affixing bumper products in cribs. This, along with a new test method to measure bumper thickness and the strength of ties, will result in a stronger standard.

These products should meet federal guidelines. Child safety is paramount. Assurance that products are designed with quality, safety, performance and functionality in mind can be achieved with such a standard. This assures that parents and caregivers are given a range of choices and safe sleep options for their family.

About the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association

The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) is a national trade organization of more than 250 companies in the United States, Canada and Mexico. JPMA exists to advance the interests, growth and well-being of North American prenatal to preschool product manufacturers, importers and distributors marketing under their own brands to consumers. It does so through advocacy, public relations, information sharing, product performance certification and business development assistance conducted with appreciation for the needs of parents, children and retailers. Each year, JPMA sponsors Baby Safety Month in September to educate parents and caregivers on the importance of the safe use and selection of juvenile products. 

To find out more information about the JPMA Certification Program, the products certified and for a complete listing of JPMA members, please visit www.jpma.org. Follow JPMA on Twitter @JPMA, connect with JPMA on Facebook or on YouTube and visit www.jpma.org to learn more about additional safety tips and other JPMA initiatives.

Contact: Linda Woody, JPMA Communications Manager, 856-642-4420, lwoody@ahint.com