MPs call on 'transparency'

WANT ANSWERS: Fairfield MP Guy Zangari, Opposition spokeswoman for Consumer Protection Julia Finn and Cabramatta MP Nick Lalich outside a Ware Street store, Fairfield, on Monday.
WANT ANSWERS: Fairfield MP Guy Zangari, Opposition spokeswoman for Consumer Protection Julia Finn and Cabramatta MP Nick Lalich outside a Ware Street store, Fairfield, on Monday.

Fairfield MP Guy Zangari has labelled the decision by the state government to not inform parents which toys and pyjamas were seized during raids on a number of $2 shops last month as "bureaucratic nonsense".

Mr Zangari was joined by Opposition spokeswoman for Consumer Protection Julia Finn and Cabramatta MP Nick Lalich on Monday to call on NSW Fair Trading to provide information to protect western Sydney families whose children may be wearing highly flammable pyjamas to bed.

NSW Fair Trading are encouraging parents to return the items if bought before they were seized in the raids.

Mr Zangari said the problem was that the government is refusing to tell parents which pyjamas or toys need to be returned.

"Does the government really expect parents to be able to work out whether items they bought for their children in good faith are non-compliant against Fair Trading's mandatory standard? This is bureaucratic nonsense," he said.

"The safety of our local family's needs to be considered the highest priority. The minister needs to immediately intervene and release information relating to any seized faulty or dangerous goods.

"The community deserves transparency when the safety of children is at risk."

Opposition spokeswoman for Consumer Protection, Julia Finn described the situation as "ridiculous".

"We have many parents across western Sydney where English is not their first language. Every cold night these families will have children playing or doing their homework by the heater wearing pyjamas that can easily catch alight, putting all the kids in the family at risk," she said.

A spokesman for Kevin Anderson, the Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation, said it's "absolutely imperative" that the products identified in Fair Trading's compliance operation, remain the focus for consumer warnings to help the public identify products that don't meet Australian standards.

"In the case of the children's pyjamas and sleepwear, consumers should check to ensure a fire hazard/warning label is attached to the clothing. If there's no label, consumers should return the clothing immediately to the store from which it was purchased and obtain a refund," he said.

"If the goods were purchased online, consumers are encouraged to go back to the seller and request a refund. If either of those two options are not available to the consumer, we urge them to contact Fair Trading at 13 32 20, and, most importantly, not to use the product under any circumstances.

"The Australian Consumer Complaints Commission (ACCC) lists products which have been recalled across Australia. This year alone the ACCC has recalled over 500 products."

Cabramatta MP Nick Lalich said: "Families in my community are already doing it tough.

"They shouldn't be faced with the need to worry about whether the clothing they purchase for their kids are safe to wear or not. This is a very serious issue that needs to be dealt with immediately."

NSW Fair Trading issues product warnings all year round. Consumers are encouraged to check productsafety.gov.au/recalls.

  • Story updated to include additional NSW Fair Trading details.