Almost everywhere they turn, California residents and visitors are barraged with a bewildering number of health-related warnings imposed by State measures such as Proposition 65. As if Californians were going to pay attention to even more ubiquitous, State-mandated warnings that intrude into their everyday lives, State Senator Ricardo Lara has introduced a bill entitled “The Cleaning Product Right-To-Know Act of 2017.” If enacted, manufacturers of cleaning products such as soaps, detergents, bathroom disinfectants, air care products, floor polish, and automobile cleansers will be required to distribute their goods in California with labels that include a list of each chemical ingredient and “contaminant of concern” in the product. Labels also would have to include State-designed pictograms that communicate “potential health impacts” of ingredients or contaminants that “exhibit a hazard trait or an environmental or toxicological endpoint” that meet certain State criteria.
Buzz words and phrases like “full ingredient disclosure” and “right-to-know” may sound good. A bill like State Senator Lara’s, however, not only is impractical, but also will further dilute the impact of product information and warnings that truly should be heeded.
Capital Appellate Advocacy founder Larry Ebner will be discussing this bill and its implications at the International Sanitary Supply Association (ISSA) Forum to be held in Washington, D.C. on June 21. He also will discuss a current U.S. Supreme Court case involving efforts of out-of-state product liability plaintiffs, and their lawyers, to “forum shop” their litigation by filing suit against out-of-state product manufacturers in the notoriously anti-industry California state court system.