Date Published: 9 April 2009

Steps to Make Cribs, Cradles and Bassinets Safer for Young Children

Health News from Canada

The Government of Canada is proposing regulatory changes to the Hazardous Products Act (HPA) that would make cribs, cradles and bassinets safer for young children. These proposed amendments will be published on Saturday, April 11, in Canada Gazette, Part I.

"The health and safety of young children are a top priority of this Government," said the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health. "The strengthening of regulations for cribs and cradles will help protect children where they sleep."

This initiative supports Canada's Consumer Safety Action Plan, a comprehensive set of new measures designed to make Canadians safer by implementing tougher federal government regulations on food, health and consumer products.

The proposed changes to the Cribs and Cradles Regulations of the HPA, as well as Item 25 of Part II of Schedule 1 of the Act would, among other things:

* include bassinets and specifications relating to their construction and performance, and require information, such as warning statements and assembly and use instructions;
* eliminate toeholds from cribs;
* establish the same side-height and performance requirements for portable and standard cribs, thereby eliminating any distinction between portable and standard cribs;
* require the inclusion of warning statements regarding blind cord proximity, moveable sides and substituting parts;
* clarify the definitions of various types of moveable sides;
* align Canadian requirements with those of the United States concerning the safety of crib corner post extensions and cut-outs; and
* require manufacturers or importers to maintain records relating to the sale, advertisement and testing of crib, cradle and bassinet products for a period of at least three years.

These proposed changes would align aspects of the Canadian regulations with those of the United States, which should facilitate compliance by manufacturers and reduce industry costs.

Comments will be received on the proposed amendments for 60 days. Following consideration of the comments, formal changes will be made and the regulations will be published in Canada Gazette, Part II, at which time they will become law.

It is important for Canadians to remember that second-hand cribs that are being sold or given away, must meet the current Next link will take you to another Web site regulations. For instance, cribs made before September 1986 do not meet current safety standards and are not allowed to be sold under the law. Cribs with visible signs of damage, missing parts or missing warning information should be destroyed.



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