Consumer Product Safety

Over 15,000 common, everyday products—from toasters to toys—are sold in stores across America. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, which has jurisdiction over product safety, about 28,000 people die and more than 33 million are injured each year because the products were misused or had hidden risks. This costs the nation more than $800 billion annually in lost productivity and health care expenses. However, little is known about the health risks when a subset of consumer products are tainted with toxic substances that can cause cancer, developmental disabilities or other devastating health effects. Also, financial products are crucial to helping Americans save, borrow and manage their money, yet they can contain risks that drive up debt and decrease savings.

The Pew Health Group works to better protect Americans by reducing dangerous and unnecessary risks in household and financial products. We increase knowledge about potential threats, and seek to strengthen industry accountability for managing risk as well as improve government authority and enforcement of product safety laws.

  • Environmental Health

    Pew Environment Group and the Pew Health Group will operate a joint environmental health initiative to modernize the Toxic Substances Control Act to emphasize better protections for children.

  • Nanotechnology

    The Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies seeks to ensure that the nation can enjoy the benefits of this new industrial revolution without undue worry about its potential environmental and human health risks.
  • Retirement Security

    Pew supports the Retirement Security Project, a project of the Financial Security Portfolio, in partnership with Georgetown University and the Brookings Institution, to advance practical policies to help middle- and lower-income Americans save for their retirement.

  • Safe Banking Opportunities Project

    The Pew Safe Banking Opportunities Project, a project of the Financial Security Portfolio, develops and promotes standards for bank accounts so that moderate- and lower-income working households who are new to or have been left out of the mainstream banking system can find safe, affordable, fair, and empowering financial  products.
  • Safe Credit Cards Project

    The Pew Safe Credit Cards Project, a project of the Financial Security Portfolio, is engaged in a multi-faceted strategy that combines raising public awareness, building partnerships with industry and advocating policies that better protect consumers. The initiative will educate the public and policy makers by assessing data on the true cost of credit.
  • Student Debt

    Pew’s student debt project champions practical policy changes to prevent unmanageable student debt burdens, avoid unnecessary borrowing and help students finance their educations more wisely.

  • Subprime Mortgages

    An increase in housing foreclosures has brought renewed attention to predatory mortgage practices. The Pew Center on the States is working with the Pew Health Group and its partners to highlight state actions to provide immediate relief to beleaguered homeowners and draw attention to reforms that will prevent more abusive subprime mortgages from being issued.

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