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Study: Cheap Jewelry Sold In Mass. Can Have High Levels Of Toxic Chemicals

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BOSTON (CBS) – Health advocates are expressing concern over the amount of toxic chemicals being found in low-cost jewelry.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030′s Don Huff reports.


The Alliance For A Healthy Tomorrow says researchers tested nearly 100 pieces of low-cost kids and adult jewelry bought in 14 different retailers in six states, including Massachusetts.

“Too much of this is not regulated at all. Our federal and state chemical regulation systems are broken and failing us,” said Elizabeth Saunders of Clean Water Action.

Saunders said researchers found that a significant amount of the items contained high levels of chemicals including lead, mercury and arsenic.

“Over half of the products tested had a high level of concern due to the presence of one or more of these hazardous chemicals,” said Saunders.

Some of the jewelry items were bought in Worcester, Fall River, Falmouth and Holyoke.

Saunders said legislation is pending on Beacon Hill.

“In Massachusetts, we are working to pass legislation called the Safer Alternatives Bill that would create a program that would systematically look at toxic chemicals and replace them with safer alternatives that would replace them wherever feasible.

“One of the clear messages is that we cannot shop our way out of this. These products are not labeled. Some of them were labeled ‘lead-free’ and still had high levels of lead in them,” Saunders said.

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