Frustrated by the number of sleep products recalled in the last year or so, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan on Wednesday announced efforts to put responsibility back on product makers and safety regulators.
Madigan said keeping track of the number of products recalled -- roughly five million units involving 200 model numbers and 60 different model names -- is asking too much of parents and caregivers.
Her office filed a lawsuit against SFCA, the company that recently bought Simplicity, responsible for millions of sleep products recalled in the last year.
"SFCA distributed the dangerous bassinets into Illinois even after the same defective design caused the death of a 4-month-old baby girl. So far SFCA has refused to cooperate," Madigan said.
Madigan also called out for an improvement to the recall system itself, calling on the Consumer Product Safety Commission to step up enforcement to stop making families wait for sometimes cheap or confusing replacement parts.
By the time 28 different types of Jardine cribs were recalled last June, parents like Jennifer Slivinskas of Orland Park already had them in their homes, and were told to wait six weeks for a replacement part.
"The options they gave me were to let them sleep in bed with me or get them pack-n-plays," Slivinskas said.
"Refunds must be offered, store credits must be given. There must be an effective incentive for people to get these out of their homes, to make sure we protect not just their children, but potentially other children in the future," Madigan said.
The third part of Madigan's strategy is a guide that breaks down all the recent recalls, and gives parents a straightforward way to tell if they have the defective product in ther home.
SFCA did not comment on the litigation by press time.