Child Safety

In an effort to enhance child safety, the Window Covering Manufacturers Association (WCMA) has introduced new standards for window treatments. These standards require that all mechanisms and chains on window coverings be fixed in place, preventing them from being pulled away from the window. This crucial update aims to reduce the risk of injury or death associated with window treatments, which can pose a significant hazard for young children.

The new standards mandate that all corded window coverings must have fixed mechanisms and chains, effectively eliminating the risk of these components becoming ligature points. Ligature points are potential areas where cords or chains could be used to inflict harm, especially to curious children who may inadvertently entangle themselves. By fixing these elements securely to the window frame, the WCMA is addressing a critical safety concern that has led to tragic incidents in the past.

Why These Standards Are Necessary

The push for these new regulations comes in response to reports of injuries and fatalities linked to window cords. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), nearly one child per month dies due to strangulation from window covering cords. This sobering statistic highlights the urgent need for improved safety measures.

The new WCMA standards apply to a variety of window treatments, including blinds, shades, and curtains that utilize cords or chains in their operation. Businesses must ensure that any new window treatments purchased meet these updated safety requirements. Additionally, it is advisable to retrofit existing window coverings to comply with these standards or replace them with compliant products.

Several leading brands and manufacturers have already adopted the new WCMA standards, demonstrating a commitment to child safety. These companies are offering products designed with integrated safety features, such as cordless blinds and shades or those with fixed cords. This proactive approach by the industry ensures that safer options are readily available to consumers.

Drapery Industries will be following these new standards with all products moving forward. We will be adding chain hold downs into our packaging during manufacturing, so that all treatments leave our facility ready to meet these new requirements.