In New Year, Two New Health Protections Go into Effect in CA

In 2020, Californians will know more about what’s in their cleaning products and new furniture and mattresses will be safer. 

Starting January, upholstered furniture, certain children’s products, and mattress foam sold in California can no longer contain added toxic flame-retardant chemicals. This will eliminate a significant source of exposure to these chemicals, which are associated with a host of health effects, particularly for children and firefighters. The state has adopted flammability standards that provide fire safety without the unnecessary use of these chemicals.

Also starting in January, cleaning product manufacturers will have to disclose the ingredients in their products online. The Cleaning Product Right to Know Act also ensures that manufacturers cannot hide chemicals of concern behind trade secret claims—if the ingredient shows up on lists of chemicals associated with health concerns, recognized by the State of California, the manufacturer has to disclose the ingredient and information about the chemical. We are already seeing some examples of cleaning product disclosure come online. This is a positive development. Consumers across the country will be able to access this information, extending the benefits of the law beyond California.

On-label disclosures will follow in 2021.

In the meantime, the new laws going into effect marks a healthy start to 2020.

This blog provides general information, not legal advice. If you need legal help, please consult a lawyer in your state.

About the Authors

Avinash Kar

Senior Attorney and Director, State Health Policy, Healthy People & Thriving Communities Program

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