New Research: Asbestos in a Crayon, Benzene in a Marker + 2 More Dangerous Chemicals Study Revealed in US Children’s School Supplies

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A new research had found toxic substances in a number of school supplies that could be dangerous for your child health. 

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Source: Getty Images

Back-to-school with toxic stuff

As it’s a few weeks left until children come back to school parents all over the globe are concerned about buying new stuff for their kids. A new study conducted by a public interest group said this week that it had found toxic substances in a number of school supplies, including asbestos in a Playskool crayon and another carcinogen, benzene, in a dry-erase marker.

The US Public Interest Research Group Education Fund tested 27 back-to-school products and typical classroom materials for toxins. While most were nontoxic, some crayons, markers and binders received a failing grade.

“It’s insane for us to be finding asbestos in kids’ products, whether it’s technically legal or not, and parents shouldn’t have to worry about this in 2018,” said Dev Gowda, an author of the report who also directs the group’s campaign to persuade manufacturers to drop toxic substances from personal care products.

Here are what school supplies fail the test

  • Playskool Crayons (36 count)

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Source: uspirgedfund

This box set, purchased at Dollar Tree, has traces of asbestos, the report found. The chemical can appear in the talc that is used in crayon manufacturing, according to the report.

If ingested or inhaled, asbestos can cause severe damage to a person’s health, including lung cancer and mesothelioma.

“Product and children’s safety are top priorities for Hasbro,” the toy company said in a statement to CNN. Hasbro owns the license to the product. “We are conducting a thorough investigation into these claims.”

Dollar Tree spokesperson Randy Guiler said the retail chain is “aware of the report and have since reverified that each of the listed products successfully passed inspection and testing.”

  • EXPO dry erase markers with scented ink

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Source: uspirgedfund

The markers, purchased on Amazon, were found to have traces of BTEX, which refers to four chemicals that have been linked to liver, kidney and immune system damage. One of the four chemicals, benzene, is a carcinogen.

It is unclear if unscented versions of the markers also contain traces of BTEX.

  • The Board Dudes six magnetic dry erase markers

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Source: uspirgedfund

The Board Dudes, another brand of dry erase markers that were also purchased on Amazon, tested positive for traces of BTEX chemicals.

  • Jot 1-inch 3-ring binder in blue

school-toxic-supplies-photo

Source: uspirgedfund

This Dollar Tree binder tested positive for traces of phthalates, a group of chemicals used to soften plastics.

According to the report, research suggests the chemicals can cause problems for children, including issues with development, asthma and childhood obesity. It is unclear if other versions of the binder also contain phthalates.


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Asbestos in a Crayon, Benzene in a Marker + 2 More Dangerous Chemicals Study Revealed in Children's School Supplies
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Asbestos in a Crayon, Benzene in a Marker + 2 More Dangerous Chemicals Revealed in Children's School Supplies
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A new research had found toxic substances in a number of school supplies that could be dangerous for your child health. 
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