The Clean Water Blog

Everyone's doing it, and so should Massachusetts!

What is IT, you ask? It’s bettering our products, homes, and lives by going flame retardant free! These chemicals have been linked to increased rates of cancer and problems with fertility, development and the nervous system and can be found in many common household items such as furniture, electronics, and toys.

Awful, right? Luckily, we’re not the only ones who think so. 14 states have already banned toxic flame retardants, pushing their leaders to recognize the hazards these chemicals pose.

This summer, Maine took it to a whole new level by passing a strong piece of legislation which bans ALL chemical flame retardants from being used in household furniture. This groundbreaking bill received broad bipartisan support in the House and Senate.

About a month after Maine did it, Rhode Island passed a similar bill banning an entire class of chemicals called organohalogens from furniture AND children’s products, also with overwhelming majorities.  

Also in mid-September, the federal Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) released a statement warning consumers about the dangers of the organohalogen class of flame retardants and is now urging manufacturers and retailers to refrain from intentionally adding or selling products that contain any of these chemicals. The CPSC had also previously voted to begin a rulemaking process to ban this entire class of flame retardant chemicals from use in children’s toys, mattresses, upholstered furniture, and electronics, which is a big win!

Now, Massachusetts has the opportunity to follow in the footsteps of our New England neighbors with State Senator Cynthia Creem and Representative Marjorie Decker’s “The Children and Firefighters Protection Act”.

In H1245/S1175, certain flame retardant chemical groups will be banned for sale in the state of Massachusetts, including the manufacturing, distributing and retail of children’s products and furniture that contain them.

This bill has received enthusiastic support from legislators, firefighters, families and community members alike, but it’s time to step up and really get this done. Make our commonwealth Flame Retardant Free!

Take action by writing to your state legislators in support of these bills!