As I have written over the past several months, First Candle is committed to engaging in conversations with families and providing them with practical information on the importance of safe sleep practices that are not only evidenced based, but reality based.
We know that parents want to do what’s best for their baby but are overwhelmed with so many messages and directives, it’s often difficult to understand what that is and make decisions that are right for their family.
Most juvenile products that are on the market are created with a baby’s safety top of mind. They are also sold with clear instructions and warning regarding the proper use of the product. Unfortunately, in some cases products are not used as intended, leading to tragic consequences.
To be clear, products that are intended for use when baby is awake and supervised should never be used as a sleep space.
However, there are products that are not designed, intended, or marketed for sleep that are being reviewed by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) against the standards for sleep products. Consequently, “stop use” advisories for these products are being issued by the CPSC causing distress and confusion among consumers.
This has now occurred with two popular brands of infant loungers. Loungers and other activity related products, when used as directed (only when baby is awake and supervised) are extremely beneficial to parents when they need somewhere to place their baby during awake time.
We are deeply concerned that, if juvenile products that parents need to safely care for their baby are no longer on the market, they will turn to other make-shift solutions which have no safety standards and are not intended for the use of caring for a baby.
We are committed to ensuring that parents receive accurate information so that they can make informed choices. Our education campaigns are intended to clearly communicate the “why’s” behind the safe sleep guidelines and what a safe sleep space looks like. We engage in conversations with parents to meet them where they’re at, taking into account their lived experiences, cultural beliefs and socio-economic barriers to help them make the safest choices for their baby.
If you, or a new parent you know, has questions about the appropriate use of a product, we encourage you to carefully read the manufacturer’s instructions.
Alison Jacobson, CEO