Crib Laws

CHILD CARE CENTERS, FOSTER HOMES, CHURCHES, HOSPITALS

• My child care center still has drop-side cribs. Are they in violation of the regulation?


No, child care facilities, family child care homes, and places of public accommodation, such as hotels and motels, have until December 28, 2012, to ensure that the cribs used in their facilities meet the requirements of the CPSC’s new crib standards.
After this date, places of public accommodation may no longer use traditional drop-side cribs or noncompliant cribs and must use cribs meeting the new federal safety standards.
Parents should talk with management about the new standards and the facility’s plan of action for replacing the cribs. Parents also should make sure their baby is not being placed in a recalled crib.
Note: Child care facilities, family child care homes, and places of public accommodation should not resell, donate or give away a crib that does not meet the new crib standards, such as trying to resell the product through an online auction site or donating to a local thrift store. CPSC recommends disassembling the crib before discarding it.

• Are portable cribs or play yards affected by the regulation? 


The crib standards cover portable cribs, but not play yards. CPSC’s crib rule includes a standard for full-size cribs (16 CFR part 1219) and a standard for non-full-size cribs (16 CFR part 1220). A non-full-size crib is a crib that is either larger or smaller (or otherwise shaped differently) from a full-size crib. The standard for non-full-size cribs covers portable cribs (a crib that “may be folded or collapsed, without disassembly, to occupy a volume substantially less than the volume it occupies when it is used”) as defined in that standard. The term “non-full-size crib” does not include products with mesh/net/screen or other non-rigid construction. Instead, enclosures with mesh or fabric sides are considered to be play yards and are not subject to the crib standards.
CPSC is developing a separate mandatory federal standard for play yards.

• Are hospitals required to provide cribs that comply with the CPSC’s new crib regulation?


The CPSC crib rule requires only certain facilities to provide cribs that comply with CPSC requirements. Those places include child care facilities, family child care homes, and places of public accommodation such as hotels and motels. Hospital cribs are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and thus, are considered to be medical devices. Cribs used in hospitals as medical devices are not required to comply with the new CPSC crib standards.
However, the CPSC will treat a child care facility that is owned or operated by, or located in, a hospital the same way as any other child care facility. We will expect the facility’s cribs to meet the new crib standards by December 28, 2012, unless the facility provides documentation showing that the cribs are medical devices.

• What types of child care arrangements are impacted by the new crib standards?


The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA) directed the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to issue the new crib standards and apply them to (among others) “any person that … based on the person’s occupation, holds itself out as having knowledge or skill peculiar to cribs, including child care facilities and family child care homes.” The law does not define “child care facility” or “family child care home.”
Based on the CPSIA language and other federal programs related to child care, we consider a “child care facility” to mean a nonresidential setting that provides child care services (which could include early learning opportunities) for a fee. We consider “family child care home” to mean a location that provides child care services (which could include early learning opportunities) for a fee in a residential setting. The residential setting is usually in a home other than the one where the child resides, although the child or children of the caregiver may also attend.
Licensing requirements vary widely from one state to another, and whether a child care provider is licensed does not determine the provider’s status as a child care facility or family child care home for purposes of CPSC’s crib standards.
We do not consider “in-home care,” where a child is cared for in his/her own home or by a relative in the child’s home or the relative’s home, to be a “child care facility” or a “family child care home.”
In turn, we do not consider such arrangements to be subject to the new crib standards.

• Are churches/church nurseries subject to the new crib standards?


The CPSIA does not provide any exclusion for churches. If a church operates a child care facility, the cribs it provides must comply with the CPSC’s crib standards. Given the language in the CPSIA, we consider a “child care facility” to be one that provides services for a fee or that pays a person (or persons) to take care of children. If volunteers take care of children without pay during a church service, we do not consider that arrangement to be a “child care facility”, and cribs used under such an arrangement would not be subject to the CPSC’s crib standards.

• Are foster homes or residential facilities subject to the new crib standards?


We consider a foster home to be a private residence where care is provided in the child’s own home. This arrangement is similar to in-home care and would not be subject to CPSC’s crib standards. However, in addition to child care facilities and family child care homes, CPSC’s crib standards apply to “places of public accommodation,” which means “any inn, hotel, or other establishment … that provides lodging to transient guests.”
We consider a public residential facility (as opposed to a private residence) to be a place of public accommodation and subject to CPSC’s crib standards.

• Are “hospital cribs” located in child care facilities subject to the new crib standards?


This depends on whether the crib is a medical “device.” CPSC’s crib standards do not apply to medical devices. A crib that meets the definition of “device” in the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. § 201(h)) is subject to regulation by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), not CPSC. You should contact FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health to determine if a particular crib is a “device.”
A crib that is located in a child care facility and is not a “device” is subject to CPSC’s crib standards.