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Today’s the deadline to qualify for this month’s debate, and entrepreneur Andrew Yang made it - the only non-white candidate who’ll be on stage. Plus, former Secretary Julián Castro questions the order of primary contests.

Mission Impossible: Safe Toy Shopping in WYO?

November 26, 2007

Cheyenne, WY – Leave no toy untested. That's the call from consumer watchdogs, in Wyoming and elsewhere in the nation, light of the more than 20 million toys recalled recently for safety reasons. With the holiday shopping season in full swing, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission takes the view that it's parents' responsibility to check their children's toys for safety.

Cheyenne attorney Terry Mackey says this year, that's an awfully big assignment. Mackey represented the family of a child seriously injured by magnets in a "Polly Pocket" toy. He says details of the constant recalls are unclear, and often require parents to know things like numbers on packaging that may have been thrown away long ago.

"What's happening is that it's almost impossible to make heads or tails out of the public releases as to which toys are really involved."

Mackey believes every toy should be thoroughly tested before being marketed. He says recalls will never be an effective way to protect children's health.

James Swartz agrees. His organization, World Against Toys Causing Harm, puts together an annual "Top Ten" list of the most dangerous toys. Typically, it focuses on choking and strangulation risks, but Swartz says the additional health hazards today are something parents cannot detect.

"With these other issues, like the chemicals, the lead, and those kinds of things, consumers understandably feel a bit helpless."

A new Cornell University study released this month shows even small levels of lead can damage children's brains. The 2007 list of most dangerous toys can be found online, at

Deborah Smith/Craig Eicher, Public News Service - WY