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Bolon bill aims to boost child safety

June 6, 2008
State Rep. Linda Bolon recently introduced legislation to protect children from unsafe products by ensuring retailers and manufacturers take proper action for the removal of those products from stores.

The Columbiana Democrat said the action was prompted by a conversation with her daughter, who read a magazine article about the need for more states to adopt legislation related to unsafe children’s products. The federal government already oversees recalls of unsafe items under federal law, but Bolon said the state version will be more restrictive.

“We just want to make sure our children are safe,” Bolon said during a phone interview Thursday.

She thought it was a good idea for the state to have its own law on the books and reviewed legislation already in place in Illinois. Only a handful of states have laws regarding protection against unsafe children’s products.

Bolon has a granddaughter who’s 2 years old.

According to a press release issued Thursday by Bolon’s legislative aide, Louis Tobin, House Bill 585 would require the following:

¯ require the director of Commerce to “maintain and update a comprehensive list of unsafe children’s products and make this list available to the public.”

¯ require commercial dealers to provide recall notices to customers or their designees and to post the information on the company’s Web site.

¯ require retailers to remove products listed as unsafe from their store shelves and Web site, provide recall notices to customers who may have provided an address or e-mail and to post recall notices in stores and on the store Web site where customers will see them.

¯ give the Ohio Attorney General the authority to bring action against retailers and manufacturers who fail to comply with the law.

Tobin said the legislation was introduced last week and hasn’t been assigned to a committee. He’s not expecting any hearings to occur until this fall.

“Toys are meant to be fun, not dangerous,” Bolon said in the press release. “We have heard of toy recalls because of lead paint, small pieces that could choke children and other hazards that threaten their welfare. This legislation makes sure Ohio has safeguards in place to protect children and punish those who don’t take their proper responsibility to shield kids from toys that could hurt them.”

Mary Ann Greier can be reached at



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