In 2013, the state implemented new fire safety standards that don’t require the use of flame retardant chemicals in furniture. But the chemicals aren’t banned.
The new labeling law is designed to inform consumers whether furniture does or does not contain them.
Flame retardants are associated with a range of health problems including cancer and hormone disruption.
Tony Stefani, with the San Francisco Firefighters Cancer Prevention Foundation, developed a rare form of cancer after a 28- year-career.
“These particular chemicals are a big piece of really a complicated toxic chemical problem that we work in, the environment we work in," says Stefani. "We think they play a major role in contributing to the negative health aspects that we’ve been getting in our profession.”
The chemical industry lost a lawsuit against the 2013 fire safety standards.
Several furniture manufacturers have already eliminated the chemicals.