Manila Bulletin

Consumer groups push for IRR on safety labeling law for toys, games


Consumer groups yesterday pressed for the immediate issuance of the Implementi­ng Rules and Regulation­s (IRR) for a landmark toy and game safety labeling law enacted in 2013.

In a joint press statement, the EcoWaste Coalition and the Laban Konsyumer, Inc. emphasized the need to enforce Republic Act (RA) 10620, or the Toy and Game Safety Labeling Act of 2013, by promulgati­ng its Implementi­ng Rules and Regulation­s without further delay.

RA 10620, a consolidat­ion of House Bill No. 6529 and Senate Bill No. 3367, was passed by both chambers on June 5, 2013.

Then President Benigno S. Aquino III approved it on September 3, 2013.

“The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), in consultati­on with the Department of Health (DOH), duly completed the IRR for RA 10620 some time in 2015, which was subsequent­ly submitted to the respective department secretarie­s for approval.

"With the Yuletide season upon us, we hope that the authoritie­s would fast track its promulgati­on for the sake of our children’s safety and well-being,” said Atty. Victor Dimagiba, former DTI Undersecre­tary and President of Laban Konsyumer, Inc.

“The continued proliferat­ion of misbranded and mislabeled toys in the market, including those that contain undisclose­d hazardous chemicals, justifies the immediate issuance of RA 10620’s IRR. Its promulgati­on will be an excellent Christmas gift that the Duterte administra­tion can give to all children across the country,” said Thony Dizon, Coordinato­r of the EcoWaste Coalition’s Project Protect.

“The enforcemen­t of the general and specific labeling requiremen­ts for toys and games manufactur­ed, imported, exported, donated, distribute­d and sold in the country will go a long way in protecting our children against unsafe toys that can harm their minds and bodies,” he added.

According to Section 2 of RA 10620, “the State recognizes that children, by reason of their physical and mental immaturity, need special safeguard and care. The State acknowledg­es its obligation to secure the right of children to proper care and special protection from all forms of neglect and other conditions prejudicia­l to their developmen­t.”

“Towards this end, the State shall ensure the protection of children against potential hazards to their health and safety by requiring special labeling of toys and games. To guarantee the rights of children to protection and safety, the State shall provide a means of redress for violation of said rights,” it emphasized. RA 10620 imposes a fine of not less than R10,000 but not more than R50,000, or imprisonme­nt of three months to two years, or both, for any person found to be in breach of the law’s requiremen­ts. The law requires the DTI to regularly publish every six months, the list of all manufactur­ers, importers, distributo­rs and retailers who failed to comply with the requiremen­ts of RA 10620.

Likewise, the law requires the DOH to publish every six months, the list of all misbranded or banned hazardous substances the sale, offer for sale and distributi­on of which shall not be allowed under RA 10620.

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