There have been numerous recalls over the past few months regarding infant sleepers. Back in April, Kids II issued a recall on over 700,000 baby sleepers, and Fisher-Price recently expanded on the recall of their popular Rock N' Play inclined sleepers by recalling the inclined sleeper accessory that comes with its Ultra-Lite Day & Night Play Yards. Despite the recall of these popular baby sleepers, some which have been linked to infant fatalities, many daycares are still using them.
According to Consumer Reports, U.S. PIRG, a consumer organization, sent a survey to daycare facilities asking if they were aware of the recalls on the products. Adam Garber, who works for U.S. PIRG, told Consumer Reports that his own son was going to a daycare that was still using the Fisher-Price Rock ‘n Play Sleeper, which was alarming. His daycare provider said she was unaware of the recall. "Our daycare provider, who cares deeply about the kids, was really confused," Garber told CR. "She said she thought there had only been a warning about the Rock ‘n Play Sleeper and that as long as the product was properly used, and babies were buckled in, it would be fine." The survey, conducted between June 20 and July 10, found that 1 in 10 of the 376 facilities that responded was still using one of the Fisher-Price or Kids II recalled inclined sleepers.
Consumer Reports state they are aware of "at least 53 infant deaths linked to inclined sleepers," making the finding even more shocking. Garber said that the results of the survey, which has respondents in states that both banned the use of recalled products in daycare centers and those that didn't, said the key is ensuring the daycare centers are aware of these recalls. "I think the biggest problem is really an information gap—getting the right information to the people who need it," he said. Nancy Cowles, executive director of Kids In Danger, echoed Garber's message. "I think this shows how hard it is to get the word out about a recall," she says. "More needs to be done by the CPSC and the recalling company to make sure that they’re reaching anyone who might be using the product."
The Consumer Product Safety Commission stated that they encourage childcare providers to sign up for recall announcements from their site, so they are automatically notified when a new recall is announced. A spokesperson also told CR, "We are looking into a redesign of our website so the most prominent recalls remain on the home page for a longer time. Recalls are always searchable whether or not they are on our home page."
Ben Hoffman, M.D., chairperson of the American Academy of Pediatric's Council on Injury, Violence, and Poison Prevention’s executive committee also told CR that he suggests parents be advocates for their children and speak to their daycare provider about the products they use. "I would encourage parents to talk to daycare providers and make sure their babies are put to sleep in a safe way, and not in a recalled product—but ideally not in any inclined sleeper," Hoffman said.
Parents can also sign up for the most up to date product recalls here.