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‘Kids in Danger’ Honors ‘Parents Against Tip-Overs’ for Its Work Preventing Furniture Tip-Over Tragedies

April 29, 2022

Sometimes in the face of horrific tragedy, purpose can be found.

On May 26, 2022, Kids in Danger, a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting children by fighting for product safety, will honor Parents Against Tip-Overs (PAT) with its Best Friend Award for its advocacy and leadership in preventing furniture tip-overs.

PAT was founded in 2018 by parents of young children who lost their lives to furniture tip-over accidents. Two of PAT’s founding members — Crystal Ellis and Janet McGee — are former Feldman Shepherd clients whose toddler sons died in separate incidents when an IKEA MALM dresser tipped over in their respective bedrooms.

Kids in Dangers honors Parents Against Tip-Overs

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), a child is sent to the emergency room every 60 minutes due to a tip-over incident, and one to two children die every month. The CPSC reports that between 2000 and 2019, 218 people died from tip-overs of chests, bureaus and dressers. Yet, the stability of dressers sold in the United States is governed by nothing more than a voluntary safety standard created primarily by the furniture industry along with other interested parties. And while the history and frequency of dresser tip-overs is well-known within the furniture industry, parents typically are unaware that many children’s dressers are unsafely designed and lack adequate warnings.

Ellis, McGee and the other members of Parents Against Tip-Overs got down to work.

PAT’s advocacy led the U.S. House of Representatives to pass in June 2021, the Stop Tip-Overs of Unstable, Risky Dressers on Youth (STURDY) Act, which would require the CPSC to create a mandatory safety standard for dresser stability. The group is now working to pass the bill in the U.S. Senate. Similar legislation, which PAT advocated for, passed the House with bipartisan support in September 2019, but unfortunately stalled in the Senate, as the public health and economic crises created by the COVID-19 pandemic gripped the nation.

PAT’s work also pushed the CPSC to unanimously vote earlier this year to move forward with a rule that would make significant changes to the way that dressers are safety-tested and labeled.

The group also educates the public about the risk and prevention of furniture tip-overs, including anchoring TVs and furniture.

Preventing Future Tragedies

Every day at Feldman Shepherd we are inspired by so many of our clients who dedicate themselves to a mission to prevent other families from suffering tragedies similar to their own. We commend Crystal Ellis, Janet McGee and all of PAT’s dedicated members for the work that they do to improve product safety for children. We also extend our gratitude and appreciation to all our furniture tip-over clients who have tirelessly advocated to help keep children safe in their bedrooms.

Click here for information about Kids in Danger.

Click here for information about Parents Against Tip-Overs.


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