Some of you are already familiar with the Baby Carrier Industrial Alliance and the amazing work they do to preserve the future of babywearing in the United States. The BCIA has many jobs, but one of them is trying to help the industry in regards to regulations. This awesome video shows who is involved in regulating baby carriers and the roll the BCIA plays. It's 10 min and you're busy, but really, it's worth the watch:
Why do I care?
I know, you don't make baby carriers, so why should you care? When the BCIA was first established, it was during a time when the babywearing industry was facing the real threat of being severely altered. Baby carriers had caught the attention of the Consumer Product Safety Commission and many styles of baby carriers were being looked at as too dangerous to sell in the United States. Ring slings are one example that was specifically targeted. The BCIA has been working towards getting safety standards adopted that will help protect the industry and make sure the baby carriers we know and love are available far into the future. The ASTM standard for buckle carriers and mei tais was already adopted by the CPSC. We are hopefully very close to having the ASTM standard for wraps and ring slings approved, but there is still much work to be done.
What can I do?
The BCIA can always use more support. The legal expertise needed during this process is both costly and necessary. Many babywearing business support the BCIA by becoming members, but they also have a "friend" memberships for people who just support the industry and work the BCIA is doing. You can join the BCIA as a friend for $25 a year or donate ANY amount through PayPal to: firstname.lastname@example.org The BCIA is important to me, not because I sell baby carriers, but because I have used them and they have been such a HUGE part of mothering my children. Because of this, I will donate 10% of my sales from Sept 27th through October 4th to the BCIA.
Public comment period?
Some of you may have heard of the CPSC public comment period. If you have any concerns about the current standard before the CPSC, I encourage you to read this post by the BCIA before doing anything else. It is important to understand the complexity of the process before getting involved. Further Reading: Sling Safety Standard Public Comment by BCIA A guide to CPSIA and sling regulations for the bewildered consumer by Wrapsody