September 6, 2002
CPSC, Industry & Safety Groups Mark
Baby Safety Month With Safe Sleep Campaign
- September is Baby Safety Month. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC),
the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association, Inc. (JPMA), Babies "R" Us
(BRU), the SIDS Alliance and other child safety organizations are marking
Baby Safety Month with the launch of an information campaign to help babies
sleep safely. The partnership among government, industry and advocacy groups
was announced at a news conference Thursday at the National Press Club in
Washington, D.C. The theme of the campaign is "Sweet Dreams...Safe Sleep for
"We usually assume that our babies are safe when they are asleep," noted
Elaine Tyrrell, CPSC's Director of Outreach. "But even the most cautious
parents may not be aware of the hidden hazards of placing babies on adult
beds or may not know how important it is to put infants to sleep on their
backs. We've formed this remarkable partnership to spread the word and save
As part of the campaign, CPSC is providing safety tips for parents and
caregivers to use in creating safe sleep environments for babies. The tips
include: "Babies placed on adult beds risk suffocation from several hidden
hazards, such as entrapment between the bed and wall;" "Always place your
baby to sleep on his or her back to reduce the risk of SIDS;" and "To reduce
the risk of suffocation, remove all soft bedding, such as pillows, thick
quilts and comforters, before placing your baby to sleep."
JPMA is sending 4000 colorful information packets to retailers nationwide,
instructing them on how to participate in the campaign. JPMA is also sending
to retailers 8000 posters that list the safety tips. In addition, JPMA has
produced a smaller version (pdf) (also, Spanish pdf smaller version) of the
poster to serve as a packaging insert for manufacturers and retailers. Some
retailers are holding safety seminars for consumers.
"JPMA has always promoted Baby Safety Month and supports CPSC's efforts to
educate parents and caregivers about safe sleep practices," said Jennifer
Szwalek, Vice President, Communications, at the Association. "Babies are our
most precious resource and parents deserve helpful information to assist
Babies "R" Us has printed nearly 1 million pamphlets containing the tips and
will hand them out to consumers at its 173 stores nationwide. Many of the
stores are conducting seminars about "Safe Sleep" with the help of CPSC
field staff and SIDS Alliance affiliates. Consumers may download the Babies
"R" Us pamphlet (pdf) (also, Spanish pdf pamphlet) and the JPMA insert (pdf)
(also, Spanish pdf insert) in both English and Spanish from www.cpsc.gov.
"There is nothing more important that a baby's health and safety," said Tom
DeLuca, Vice President, Product Development Safety Assurance, Toys "R" Us,
Inc. "At Babies "R" Us, we see expectant parents and new parents all the
time. Offering information on safe sleep is only one way Babies "R" Us and
www.Babiesrus.com can assist parents during this very important time in
Babies "R" Us is also delivering 200,000 pamphlets to childbirth educators
nationwide through the American Baby Group, publishers of American Baby
magazine. www.Babiesrus.com will provide safety resources free on line.
The SIDS Alliance is supporting the campaign and is working with all of the
partners to inform consumers about the safe sleep tips.
"The SIDS Alliance applauds the Sweet Dreams...Safe Sleep for Babies
campaign and its partner organizations, CPSC, JPMA and BRU, for their
efforts to save precious lives," said Laura Reno, Director of Marketing and
Public Relations, National SIDS Alliance. "The SIDS Alliance remains
dedicated to educating parents and caregivers about the importance of a safe
sleep environment for babies, and will utilize our nationwide network of
families, health professionals and volunteers in over 50 affiliate chapters
to deliver these life-saving messages."
The National SAFE KIDS Campaign, the Danny Foundation, Kids in Danger and
CPSC will also distribute the Babies "R" Us pamphlets. This effort
represents Phase II of the CPSC's drive to alert consumers to the hidden
hazards of placing babies on adult beds. Phase I was the release, on May 3,
2002, of CPSC data on these hazards. The CPSC has reports of more than 100
deaths of children under age 2, most from suffocation, associated with
features of adult beds. These deaths occurred from January 1, 1999 to
December 31, 2001 and involved an entrapment, a fall, or a situation in
which bedding or the position of the child was related to the death. Nearly
all of the children, 98%, were babies under 1 year old.
Sweet Dreams...Safe Sleep for Babies Safety Tips include:
Always place your baby to sleep on his or her back to reduce the risk of
Wherever your baby sleeps should be as safe as possible. Babies placed on
adult beds risk suffocation from several hidden hazards such as:
Entrapment between the bed and wall.
Entrapment involving the bed frame, headboard or footboard.
Falls from adult beds onto piles of clothing, plastic bags, or other soft
materials resulting in suffocation.
Suffocation in soft bedding (such as pillows, thick quilts and comforters).
To reduce the risk of suffocation, remove all soft bedding such as pillows,
thick quilts, comforters, sheepskins and other pillow-like soft products
before placing your baby to sleep.
When using a crib, make sure it meets current safety standards, has a firm,
tight-fitting mattress and tight-fitting bottom sheet.
When using a portable crib or play yard, be sure to use only the mattress or
pad provided by the manufacturer.