The Center for Environmental Health filed its complaint under the state's Proposition 65 law, which stipulates that products that expose the public to chemicals that are reproductive toxins or carcinogens must carry a warning label or be taken off the market. The agency based its claim on a Greenpeace report, which discovered phthalates, a group of chemicals that can cause birth defects, in the vinyl plastic earphone wiring.
Phthalates is banned in toys in San Francisco and the European Union.
"This isn't a toy. But the overall exposure of the public in general is a problem, especially for children," said Rick Hind, legislative director for Greenpeace's toxics campaign. "It's a reproductive hazard. It could be a kidney hazard.""
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