NEW YORK, Nov. 1, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- With the holiday shopping season well underway, The Toy Association is offering parents, grandparents, and other gift-givers reliable toy and play safety advice as part of the 2nd annual "Toy Safety Awareness Month." Throughout November, The Toy Association and its toy manufacturer and retailer members will be offering parents and caregivers information on safe toy shopping, appropriate toy selection, and safe play at home.
"Our members work year-round to design, produce, and deliver products that comply with 100+ strict federal safety standards and tests to safeguard children at play," said Joan Lawrence, The Toy Association's "Toy Safety Mom" and senior vice president of standards and regulatory affairs. "However, safety is a partnership shared by industry and consumers, and Toy Safety Awareness Month aims to equip families with the resources they need to ensure every play date is both fun and safe."
As families get ready for a fun-filled holiday, they are encouraged to play it safe with these important tips from PlaySafe.org:
A recent survey of 2,000 U.S. parents conducted by OnePoll on behalf of The Toy Association found that 41% of parents would be tempted to buy a hot-ticket item for their child if it was being sold for a much cheaper price from an online seller they weren't familiar with. The Toy Association is urging shoppers to research products and sellers before making their purchase in order to avoid potential counterfeits and ensure children are gifted toys that meet all safety standards.
It's always better to buy the real thing or wait for a trusted retailer to re-stock the product you're looking for than to buy a "fake" toy or cheaper alternative that has the potential to be unsafe. Learn how to spot counterfeits by reading our Toy Shopping Checklist for Families.
The same survey found that 60% of parents would allow their child to play with a toy meant for an older child. But contrary to what some might think, age labels on toys are not mere suggestions. They are established by experts who take many factors into account to ensure children's safety. Toys labeled 3+ might contain small parts that are a choking hazard for children under 3 or those who still mouth toys. If there is no age label on the packaging or in the online description, it's best to find another item that is clearly marked for the child's age.
Always check – and follow – the age recommendations and instructions that accompany toys. Check out more safety tips at PlaySafe.org.
Sometimes, kids are gifted (or come into contact with) non-toy products such as desk accessories, home decorations, watches, and remote controls that are not meant for kids and may contain small batteries and/or high-powered magnets that can be accessed by children and are very dangerous if accidently swallowed. Similarly, latex balloons are not toys and can pose a choking risk to children when uninflated or broken into pieces.
Stick with purchasing toys intended for children, since there are strict federal standards in place to make sure those products are safe. Watch our Toy Safety 365 Days a Year for more information, including tips from a pediatric emergency medicine physician.
"No matter how old your children are or where they're playing, be sure to supervise them, or better yet, play with them," added Lawrence. "Demonstrating the correct way to use a toy or game helps your child understand how to safely enjoy it. And research shows that play is beneficial for adults, too. Playing together as a family relieves stress, builds lasting memories, and paves the way for a safe and joy-filled holiday season."
The Toy Association and its members take toy safety extremely seriously. In addition to educating parents and caregivers about safe play year-round, The Toy Association works with government agencies and leading e-commerce platforms to combat illicit sellers of counterfeit toys and has a long history of leadership in toy safety, having helped develop the first comprehensive toy safety standard more than 40 years ago.
Follow The Toy Association on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter to share play safety posts throughout November in honor of Toy Safety Awareness Month (#ToySafetyAwarenessMonth, #PlaySafe.org).
About The Toy Association www.toyassociation.org / www.thegeniusofplay.org / www.playsafe.org
Founded in 1916, The Toy Association™, Inc. is the trade association representing all businesses involved in creating and delivering toys and youth entertainment products for kids of all ages. The Toy Association leads the health and growth of the U.S. toy industry, which has an annual U.S. economic impact of $102.4 billion, and is the nation's most effective resource and influential advocate for hundreds of companies including manufacturers, retailers, licensors and others who are involved in the youth entertainment industry. Our manufacturing members account for 93% of U.S. toy and game sales driving the annual $38.2 billion U.S. domestic toy market. The Toy Association serves as the industry's voice on the developmental benefits of play and promotes play's positive impact on childhood development to consumers and media. The organization has a long history of leadership in toy safety, having helped develop the first comprehensive toy safety standard more than 40 years ago, and remains committed to working with medical experts, government, consumers, and industry on ongoing programs to ensure safe and fun play. As a global leader, The Toy Association produces the world-renowned Toy Fair; advocates on behalf of members around the world; sustains the Canadian Toy Association; acts as secretariat for the International Council of Toy Industries and International Toy Industry CEO Roundtable; and chairs the committee that reviews and revises America's widely emulated ASTM F963 toy safety standard.