Today, the Commission approved a spending plan for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2022 and directed the agency’s use of outstanding American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. With a shoestring budget, we faced difficult decisions on how best to prioritize among life-saving projects. In each of those decisions we put consumers first.
I am especially proud that we secured bipartisan support for three amendments:
- First, we elevated a cutting-edge tool to assess the impact of chronic hazards, many of which disproportionately hurt low-income communities. It will improve how this agency understands and addresses cancers, reproductive system disorders, and developmental delays caused by chemicals in consumer products.
- Second, we adopted an amendment to upgrade the software that the agency uses to process and store data. With this upgrade, the agency will gain new capabilities to mine data for potential product safety violations, so we can judiciously enforce our laws and rules against bad actors. At the same time, it will allow us to drill down into how specific product hazards affect communities of color, low-income Americans, and other vulnerable groups.
- Finally, we are funding consumer behavior research, including focus groups, to improve consumer participation in product recalls and encourage consumers to use a key agency tool for reporting hazardous products: saferproducts.gov.
Six months into my time as a CPSC Commissioner, I am as encouraged as ever that we will continue to do better in our mission to provide confidence that products are safe for consumers and their families.