Members Of Congress Implore Mattel To "Do The Right Thing," Recall Lead-Tainted Toy Blood-Pressure Cuff

56 Members of Congress want to know why Mattel CEO Robert Eckert refuses to issue a nationwide recall for a toy blood-pressure cuff that is contaminated with lead. The affected blood-pressure cuff, sold as part of the Fisher-Price Medical Kit, was recalled exclusively in Illinois after Mattel received a complaint from State Attorney General Lisa Madigan. Legislators want Eckert to stand by a pledge made to reassure a jittery public before the holiday buying season that Mattel would ‘earn back our trust with deeds, not just with words.’

We encourage you to review your pledge and act accordingly by recalling the red blood pressure cuff. Furthermore, we challenge you to live up to your words and set a standard for the entire industry by completely eliminating the use of lead in all of the children’s products manufactured by Mattel. When parents purchase a product from your company, they are not just purchasing a toy–they are putting their trust in an established brand that has historically been believed to provide merchandise that is safe for their children. We urge you to live up to this reputation.

The CPSC is “investigating the product,” but has yet to issue a nationwide recall.

Representative Elijah E. Cummings, Democrat of Maryland, wrote Mr. Eckert in December asking it to stop using lead in its products. He said that Mattel’s reply, which arrived last week, and its action on the toy were inadequate and that the company should issue a nationwide recall.

Mr. Cummings said in an interview that if Mr. Eckert “knew his child had one of these toys with this kind of lead in it, I know he would not allow his child to be having such a toy.”

We’re with Eckert. Let’s move past trite words and focus on actions. Mattel could rustle up some needed sympathy with a new toy: My ‘Lil CEO. He could wear a power suit and come with an accessory set: an executive desk on which to churn out meaningless promises, a companion PR professional to help think up slick-sounding lies that deceive Congress and parents, and maybe a token sick child (complete with hospital gown!) to cry over. The whole set could be made in China and would come covered with tasty small magnets. Ages 5 and under!

Lawmakers Say Mattel Broke Word on Lead [NYT]
Cummings, DeLauro to Mattel: ‘Stop Selling Toxic Toys’ [Congressman Elijah Cummings]
PREVIOUSLY: Consumer Reports Finds “Troubling” Levels Of Lead In Unrecalled Fisher-Price Toy
Fisher-Price Pulls Lead Tainted Toy In Illinois Only
Fisher-Price Pulls Another Lead-Tainted Product In Illinois Only
(Photo: Getty Images)


Edit Your Comment

  1. Walrii says:

    There should be a federal law, that could be used to fine corporations, outlawing dumb @$$ery. Imagine the tax revenue we could generate! Maybe we’d be able to put a drop in the bucket that is the federal deficit.

  2. MYarms says:

    I wish there was a way we could find out about toys from my childhood and older. I bet those toys weren’t just coated in lead paint, they were probably made out of lead.

  3. WhaDa says:

    I wish corporations weren’t afforded citizen status. They should exist at the pleasure of the state and be afforded no consideration when their welfare is at odds with a true citizens.

  4. EmperorOfCanada says:

    If only people could turn lead into gold, these companies would gladly recall.

  5. Islandkiwi says:

    Maybe it’s an age thing? Like infant toys are more likely to be chewed on, older kids toys can have lead because they are less of a risk?

    All I know is, I am sick to death of hearing about sub-par quality merchandise coming in from China. I’ll pay the extra couple of bucks, okay?

  6. Joedel263 says:

    if it makes anyone feel better, when this was first brought to the publics attention, Toys R Us pulled the medical kits from their shelves and refuses to purchase more..

  7. joebobfunguy says:

    I just threw all my kid’s mattel stuff out. Last straw for me. They just lost at least $400 dollars a year (including Xmas) from my wallet. To bad I can’t punch him in his face. Maybe they sell lead tainted boxing gloves.

  8. Buran says:

    @WhaDa: I’m pretty sure their charters CAN be revoked. I’d like to see that done to companies like this that obviously don’t want to spend the money to recall and safely and properly dispose of and recycle the dangerous goods.

  9. n/a says:

    Dont forget with that my lil ceo it comes with prepared statements like this gem

    “we are taking ________ that matter seriously”

  10. Joafu says:

    Hmm, I wonder if Congress will demand a recall for my city’s water.

  11. savvy999 says:

    Mattel doesn’t voluntarily recall across the board, because that would imply that Mattel has done something wrong, and in the modern corporate/legal/political world, admitting that you are wrong is much much worse than actually being wrong.

    Congress is a bunch of toothless, spineless fucktards. What does one expect from a group that’s blatantly and gleefully trying to bribe their way to reelection?

  12. brokeincollege says:

    How bout this: Recall those toys or we’ll fine you into oblivion. $10,000,000 PER lead-tainted toy.

  13. FF_Mac says:

    I already pitched the one we had.

  14. liquiddaddy says:

    I’m gonna miss that thing. What do I do with my Mattel lead-encrusted toy Foley catheter, forceps and bed pan?

  15. CurbRunner says:

    Congress is a bunch of gutless wimps when it comes to cutting into any corporation’s bottom line of $$$$$$$’s.

  16. boxjockey68 says:

    to the garbage with anything mattel…..that’s just wrong to not recall. They will never get any more money from us.

  17. GBU-52 says:

    This can all be blamed on the monster that NAFTA created. NAFTA is responsible for most of our employment and trade woes at the expense of the regular Joe. Since NAFTA, most big US corporations went to other countries taking our jobs with them. They make the same product for far cheaper as they can skirt US trade laws, labor laws and use inferior product materials, thus your tainted toys. The products are made for pennies on the dollar and they do not pass the savings onto us at all. They dont care about us, they only want that bottom line no matter if the toy was made of uranium. Thank you Bill Clinton for your fucking NAFTA nightmare!!!

  18. Hans_Auff says:

    Baahhh! I eat lead for lunch!

  19. thatgirlinnewyork says:

    Eckert’s career was first made at Kraft/Philip Morris– obfuscation comes naturally to those who peddle toxicity–whether that be chemically-laden packaged foods, tobacco, or toys. By golly, that man has touched just about every life stage–cradle to grave. Congrats, Bob!!