CA Assembly Passes Bill to Disclose Toxic Chemicals in Cleaning Products

Media Releases

Media Contacts
Jason Pfeifle

Today the California state Assembly passed SB 258, The Cleaning Product Right-to-Know Act. The bill awaits one more vote in the Senate on the Assembly’s amendments before it heads to the desk of Governor Jerry Brown. 

Statement by CALPIRG Public Health Advocate Jason Pfeifle:

A big part of keeping your home or workplace clean is protecting the health of your loved ones from germs.

Cleaning shouldn’t harm anyone’s health. But for far too long we’ve been kept in the dark about health-harming chemicals used in cleaning supplies.

The Cleaning Product Right-to-Know Act changes that. Under SB 258, the public will be safer because consumers and workers will have on-label information about chemicals of concern in products like counter spray, glass cleaner, and dishwashing detergent. With this critical information, consumers and workers can choose cleaning products that are right for their health and the health of their families.

And furthermore, this kind of transparency will help push industry to use safer ingredients in these common household products.

Thank you Senator Ricardo Lara for pushing this bill to protect the health of workers and families. We strongly urge Governor Brown to sign it into law.

More background: 

For more than two years, CALPIRG has been working to shine a light on chemicals in household cleaning products with a coalition that includes Breast Cancer Prevention Partners, Environmental Working Group, Women Voices for the Earth, Clean Water Action, Center for Environmental Health, and Natural Resources Defense Council.

Cleaning products contain thousands of chemicals – many of which are toxic and have been associated with cancer, asthma, reproductive harms and other serious health effects. For example, chemicals called Ethanolamines, linked to occupational asthma, have been detected in glass cleaners and laundry detergents. And studies have shown that some of the chemicals of concern in cleaning products can invade our bodies. They have been found in urine, breast milk, as well as the umbilical cord blood of newborns. Under SB 258, these chemicals will have to be disclosed to consumers and workers.

Cleaning products aren’t the only category of products making progress. We are also working to remove toxic chemicals from personal care products like deodorant, lotion, and shampoo. In February 2017, Unilever, the manufacturer of brands like Dove and Axe,  committed to disclose most of its fragrance ingredients by 2018 through SmartLabel. In August 2017, P&G also announced they would expand their fragrance disclosures. SC Johnson also recently announced that it would remove the harmful chemical galaxolide from its products and replace it with a safer alternative. Both of these moves are important steps in protecting public health from toxic chemicals in consumer products.


CALPIRG’s Jason Pfeifle lobbying for SB 258 with other allies.