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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Safe Cosmetics Act of 2010

The following is a well written article regarding the Safe Cosmetics Act of 2010 by Donna Maria Coles Johnson CEO and Founder of Indie Beauty & Indie Business Network. We encourage you to visit her web site, http://indiebeauty.com/, and consider joining IBN, the social networking site for small and independent business owners and the people who love them!

Dear IBN Members:
I write to advise you that, earlier today, the Safe Cosmetics Act of 2010 was introduced by Reps. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., Ed Markey, D-Mass., and Tammy Baldwin, D-Wisc. (Link to PDF of legislation.)

As I understand it, this proposed legislation was drafted in large part by the Campaign For Safe Cosmetics (CFSC), which as you may know published a video today entitled “The Story Of Cosmetics.” You can see the video and read my brief commentary about it here.

As you might imagine, this is quite a comprehensive piece of legislation, far more involved than anything we’ve addressed before. I am still reading through it. I don’t have any advocacy points or discussion points at this time because I don’t want to prematurely draw any conclusions, but I want you to be thinking about at least these things because we will soon have to create and circulate our position:

1. Read the legislation (PDF link here), with an eye toward understanding how it will impact how you do business. What new requirements would it impose on you as a manufacturer of cosmetics? What new costs would you likely incur, such as new employees, testing equipment etc.

2. What outlets do you have in place to tell your story when the time comes? Your blog? YouTube? FaceBook? Etc. At some point, we will need to call on members to publicly share their stories of how the legislation will impact their businesses, and also what you as a business owner would propose as an alternative to the legislation as drafted.

3. If you are a signer of the Compact For Safe Cosmetics, this legislation does not affect you any differently from the way it affects anyone else, but it might be an interesting exercise to search through the email communications you have received from CFSC to see if they asked for your input on this legislation. I for one am quite curious about this.

4. If you know of any small business owner anywhere that operates in a regulated industry that has any kind of exemption for small business owners, please post the information to the (link: discussion area) I set up at our private networking site. It can be any industry, anywhere, state or federal. We may be able to use such exemptions in other areas in our advocacy. (If you volunteered to help us find such exemptions, stay tuned for a separate email from me.)

5. If you are one of the IBN members who does not make cosmetics, but who loves using artisan and Indie-made cosmetics, and maybe provide services to those companies, please consider collaborating with your “Indies In Arms” to help your cosmetics manufacturer colleagues address this legislation. It’s obviously too soon yet to make public statements because we still have to read and analyze the legislation, but we can begin supporting one another generally now on FaceBook, Twitter, etc., just by encouraging each other with updates of support for small businesses generally.

CFSC is hosting a briefing on Capitol Hill on July 23 at 9:00am in the Rayburn House Office Building. If you are in DC this Friday, it would be a good idea for you to attend, ask questions, etc. IBN is sending a representative, but I think the more small businesses in attendance generally, the better. You can see the announcement and details about the briefing here.

If you decide to go, please let me know via email so I can connect you with everyone else who I know that may be going, and you can connect with each other there. Also if you plan to go, be sure to call the number at the bottom of the announcement to get your name on the RSVP list. I am told that it will be heavily attended, and that even though it does not start until 9:00, anyone wishing to get in should be there around 8:15.

I do not have anything more to report at this time, but I have opened a discussion at our private member social networking site so members can discuss and share here. If you cannot access that link, email reply me a request to send you another invitation to join us there. Feel free to use it, but please keep in mind that questions cannot be fully answered at this time because no one has had time to read the Act.

Please do not send any email questions in response to this message as I cannot keep up with the ones I am already receiving. If you post to the forum link, I can easily see everything at once and we can talk there.

I will host a member conference call sometime quite soon to address issues, but that probably won’t happen before the end of next week. Meanwhile, let’s connect at the private forum.

I am honored to serve you.


CEO + Founder: Indie Beauty & Indie Business Network

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