WCMA Stakeholder Meeting

This past week I attended the WCMA stakeholder meeting at the Consumer Product Safety Commission headquarters in Bethesda Maryland. During the meeting the Industry promised to “reduce or minimize” the hazards associated with window covering products. We believe that they can eliminate ALL hazards and so does Inez Tennenbaum.

See quote below.

As Linda [Kaiser] can attest, the rate of deaths and near-deaths involving window covering cords has been unchanged for far too many years. The work that begins today must conclude next year with standards that enhance the safety of all window coverings.

When I say enhance, I mean design out the risk of strangulation to children. I’m looking for a full commitment in the important work that you all are undertaking to eliminate the risk of strangulation.

We have been invited to be on the steering committee which will enable us to help draft the new comprehensive standard for 2011. During the meeting, we presented a prototype created by Robert Nievens, retired NY Firefighter, that could be used as a retrofit for continuous loop chains and continuous loop cords. We also saw a few other examples of prototypes that could possibly eliminate the strangulation hazards on window blinds. The technology is here. After seeing the prototypes, we believe that all window covering products could be designed so that no parent would ever have to go through the horror of find their child strangled on a window covering cord.

It is so exciting to see so many Industry leaders excited about window covering safety.
Many Industry members heard for the first time the statistics of over 300 children who have died in the past 20 years. They had no idea so many children had been injured or killed. What does that tell you? If the Industry doesn’t realize how often children get caught up in the cords, how are parents supposed to know?


Education on how to identify window covering cord hazards is the leading prevention in strangulation. So many parents don’t understand there is still a risk even if cords are tied up high. Some might think that their children are not old enough to reach the cords, or maybe some believe that their children are too old to mess with a cord from a window covering. One man at the meeting stated “Children are the most inventive and mischievous beings on the planet.” This is so true. They can do anything. They can climb anything. They can reach anything if they really put their minds to it. One mother once told me that her child who was a little under 2 had reached the cookies on TOP of the fridge!

We are still running our giveaway contest for $100 Visa giveaway card. Only a day and a half left! Let your friends know. No only do they have a chance to win, but they also learn about safety at the same time.