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Oh wow. This is already just not the year for H&M. First, there was the huge controversy over their destroying perfectly fine unsold clothing, then there was the news that the recently-released "organic cotton" line isn't so organic at all, and now there's this: some H&M accessories have unsafe levels of lead.
StyleList investigates the details and the terms of the settlement that H&M and fellow lead-happy chain New York & Co made with the Center for Environmental Health, which found that "some of the handbags, wallets and other accessories they were selling contained levels of lead between 13 and a whopping 115 times over the legally acceptable standard of 300 parts per million." They'll each be paying $35,000 and forced to take the dangerous products off the market, but this ruling is only effective in California.
No specific items have been named, so we suppose the rest of the country will continue to live with and purchase them, unless they are quietly removed from shelves. Now let's put this H&M lead find into perspective, however; the Center for Environmental Health also found unacceptable lead levels in products from Walmart, American Eagle Outfitters, Aldo, French Connection, Macy's and Nine West. H&M and New York & Company as just the only ones to actually settle the cases.
· H&M and New York & Co Settle Lead Content Case [StyleList]
· H&M's Organic Line: Not So Organic, Actually [Racked]
· H&M Trashgate coverage [Racked]