New York Signs PFAS Apparel Law, Amid Rising “Forever Chemical” Lawsuits

New York is the latest state to ban the manufacture and sale of apparel and textiles containing perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (“PFAS”). This week, Governor Kathy Hochul signed off on S6291A, which was passed by the New York State Senate this spring, and is slated to go into effect on December 31, 2023. The New York legislation – which describes PFAS as “a class of chemical that have a variety of commercial liquid-wicking applications, which has led to their presence in a variety of products consumed by consumers” – comes amid a nation-wide push by regulators to ban these “forever chemicals,” with roughly two dozen states either enacting or proposing PFAS-specific legislation as of December.

The impending law in New York will amend the state’s environmental conservation law in order to mandate that “no person shall sell or offer for sale in this state any apparel containing perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances” – i.e., “a class of fluorinated organic chemicals containing at least one fully fluorinated carbon atom” – as “intentionally added chemicals.” In terms of apparel, the bill defines it as “clothing items intended for regular wear or formal occasions including, but not limited to, undergarments, 1/16/23, 9:09 AM New York Signs PFAS Law, Amid Rising Lawsuits, Legislation 2/4 shirts, pants, skirts, dresses, overalls, bodysuits, vests, dancewear, suits, saris, scarves, tops, leggings, leisurewear, formal wear, onesies, bibs, and diapers.”

States Focus on PFAS Legislation

New York is not the only state to focus specifically on apparel when it comes to outlawing these chemicals, which are commonly used to make products water-repellant or waterproof, stain-resistant, and/or breathable; California has passed a PFAS-specific law that covers apparel and textiles, while states, such as Rhode Island and Minnesota, have proposed similar legislation. Cosmetics have also proven a common focus for PFAS legislation, with the likes of California, Colorado, Maryland, and New York passing laws to stop the offer and sale of cosmetic products and personal care products containing such substances.

Read More At: TFL (The Fashion Law)


New York Signs PFAS Apparel Law, Amid Rising “Forever Chemical” Lawsuits