U.S. Leaders of the APEC Toy Safety Initiative Honored for Outstanding Accomplishments
9 August 2010
Members of the APEC Toy Safety Initiative, a group formed to improve the alignment of international toy safety standards and conformity assessment practices while reducing technical barriers to trade, were selected as the recipients of the 2010 American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Chairman's Award, which honors outstanding accomplishments by any group or individual on behalf of ANSI or the ANSI Federation.
Comprised of toy industry stakeholders from both the private and public sectors, the group consists of:
- Inez Tenenbaum, chairman of the Consumer Product Safety Commission;
- Rich O'Brien, director of the Office of International Programs for the Consumer Product Safety Commission;
- Jamie Ferman, international trade specialist for the U.S. Department of Commerce;
- Julia Doherty, senior director of non-tariff measures for the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative;
- Jennifer Stradtman, international trade specialist for the U.S. Department of Commerce;
- Kitty Pilarz, director of worldwide product safety for Mattel and chair of the ASTM F15 Committee;
- Joan Lawrence, vice president of standards and regulatory affairs for the Toy Industry Association and chair of the U.S. TAG to ISO TC 181; and
- Carter Keithley, president of the Toy Industry Association.
"This team has worked diligently on the issue of alignment of international standards for toy safety through the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC)," said Heidi Hijikata, standards liaison for the International Trade Administration (ITA) of the U.S. Department of Commerce and nominator of the group. "[They have] not only performed outstanding accomplishments for the ANSI Federation, but also for U.S. consumers of toys at large. Their collaborative work has established the United States as a leader in toy safety in the Asia Pacific region and beyond."
The two-year APEC Toy Safety Initiative was funded by the APEC Trade Investment Liberalization Fund. The major elements of the project included a survey and mapping of all APEC economy toy regulations, a Regulators' Dialogue on the margins of APEC Senior Officials Meetings in August 2009, and an Open Dialogue for Stakeholders in January 2010 on the margins of the Hong Kong Toy Fair.
Recognition was also given to the remarkable cooperation that is emerging among ASTM International, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the European Committee for Standardization (CEN) as the main developers of toy safety standards.
"Over the past ten years, the technical experts who have participated in these standardization efforts have made great strides in harmonizing European, International and ASTM F963 standards," said Carter Keithley, TIA president. "The APEC initiative is the next step in our ongoing endeavor to further enhance global toy safety standards."
Cohn Blair, CEO of Standards Australia and the Executive Committee Chairman of the Pacific Area Standards Congress (PASC), remarked at the last PASC meeting that he had never seen an example of such a high-level of cooperation between the industry, regulators and standardizers as he had seen in the APEC Toy Safety Initiative.
"I believe this example of public-private partnership is the example the ANSI Federation is constantly discussing and encouraging with its international partners," said Hijikata.
"We at TIA are thrilled with this honor, and very grateful for the recognition ANSI is providing for this important effort," added Keithley.
CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum delivered brief remarks on behalf of the APEC Toy Safety Initiative team during the ANSI awards program on September 22 ceremony in the Washington, DC metropolitan area. The awards event was held in conjunction with World Standards Week 2010.
ANSI is a private non-profit organization whose mission is to enhance U.S. global competitiveness and the American quality of life by promoting, facilitating, and safeguarding the integrity of the voluntary standardization and conformity assessment system.
For more information, visit www.ansi.org/wsweek.
About the APEC Toy Safety Initiative
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