December 22, 2008

Closing Santa's Sweatshop: Delivering Obama's Toy Safety and Fair Trade Promises

Help us Close Santa's Sweatshop: Tell President-Elect Obama to fix trade deals that limit our ability to ensure our kids' toys are safe.

Dear Fair Trade Supporter,

Kids across America face dangerous threats this holiday season from unsafe imported toys. Our trade agreements have flooded the country with toys made in countries with incredibly lax safety standards, while at the same imposing limits on the safety standards and inspections we can impose on imports. China has repeatedly threatened action at the World Trade Organization (WTO) to undermine U.S. legislation meant to keep our kids safe.

Sign our petition to help protect our kids from unsafe imported toys.

Our new report Closing Santa's Sweatshop: How to Deliver on Obama's and Congress' Toy-Safety and Fair-Trade Promises shows how to fix the import safety crisis: update U.S. domestic product safety policies to the reality that we now import a record 90 percent of the toys sold in the United States, and change our existing trade agreements to allow strict import safety standards and to remove incentives to relocate production offshore.

Luckily for our families, President-elect Obama committed during his campaign to address unsafe imports and to rewrite failed WTO/NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) style agreements that encourage the offshoring of production and limit border inspection and imported product safety standards. But big corporations and their teams of lobbyists are mounting a pressure campaign to promote the status quo.

Tell the President-Elect you've got his back on toy safety and trade reform. Sign our petition to protect kids from unsafe imported toys and unfair trade!

This year, the United States will import an unprecedented $23 billion in toys. However, product safety standards and enforcement are extremely lax in many countries now producing children's toys, 90 percent of which come from China alone. And while production of our children's toys has become globalized, our consumer-safety system – and its protections against injury and death – has not. The Consumer Product Safety Commission could not verify that it has any full-time safety inspectors in our 326 ports; it only monitors nine of these 326 ports with part-time inspectors.

Please help us protect our kids' safety and urge the president-elect to renegotiate trade deals that promote offshoring and place limits on import safety and inspection.

Sign our petition to help protect our kids from unsafe imported toys. Then, tell a friend!

We wish you a happy and safe holiday season.

Thank you for all you do,
Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch

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