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News Release | U.S. PIRG Education Fund & Environment America Research and Policy Center

Interactive map shows widespread lead contamination in schools drinking water

Lead contamination of school drinking water is more pervasive than previously thought, according to testing data from across the nation published on Thursday by Environment America Research & Policy Center and U.S. PIRG Education Fund on a new interactive map. The groups urged public officials to take swift action to “get the lead out” of schools’ drinking water.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

CFPB receives over 2,500 junk fee comments | Ed Mierzwinski

In response to a tidal wave of unfair marketplace practices, the CFPB asked the public to submit comments on the impact of junk fees on their lives. Some 2,500 comments later, consumers have described the pain points caused by unfair junk fees.

Cover graphic courtesy Student Borrower Protection Center, used by permission

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Blog Post | Consumer Tips

8 ways you can be a smart consumer and also be kind to the environment | Teresa Murray

In recognition of Earth Day, here are some ways you can cut back on what you throw away and, in many cases, save money and protect yourself at the same time

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Blog Post | Consumer Tips, Food, Solid Waste

How to Save Food and Prevent Waste | Danielle Melgar

We all play a role in creating food waste, so we can all be part of the solution.

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News Release | MASSPIRG Education Fund

New scorecard grades popular apparel brands on commitments to avoiding PFAS

MASSPIRG, Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc.(NRDC) and Fashion FWD released a scorecard today ranking popular retail and apparel brands on policy commitments to eliminate a dangerous class of toxic “forever chemicals,” known as PFAS, from their products. 

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News Release | MASSPIRG Education Fund | Consumer Tips

Dark patterns: Your apps know too much about you, so what can you do?

When National Consumer Protection Week began in the late 1990s, many Americans still didn’t have internet access at home, let alone on mobile devices. Now, infringement on our online privacy is a huge threat, even when you just have apps running in the background. The new tips guide from U.S. PIRG Education Fund (PIRG’s research partner) can help consumers control access to their private information and what companies can do with your data if they get it.

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News Release | MASSPIRG Education Fund | Solid Waste

‘Failing the Fix’ scorecard grades Apple, Google, Dell, others on how fixable their devices are

BOSTON -- Consumers often don’t know which products will last and they’ll be able to fix, or which manufacturers make fixable devices and support Right to Repair. A new scorecard from MASSPIRG Education Fund, “Failing the Fix,” ranks the most popular cell phone and laptop makers for consumers who seek to purchase easily repairable products – especially those from companies who do not fight Right to Repair.

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News Release | MASSPIRG Education Fund | Consumer Tips

ADVISORY: NEW REPORTS, TIP GUIDES FOR NATIONAL CONSUMER PROTECTION WEEK, MARCH 6-12

MASSPIRG Education Fund offers beneficial advice to help your audience on a range of issues Americans face daily

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Media Hit

Gas stoves are a risk to your health and emitters of dangerous pollutants

Most of us assume that products on the market are safe. It’s reasonable to think that retailers would provide ample information if a product posed a potential threat to your health. We see examples of this all the time, like warning labels on cigarettes or choking hazard warnings on toys with small parts. As consumers, we expect to be informed.

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News Release | U.S. PIRG Education Fund | Solid Waste

Statement: Consumer, environmental advocates welcome Coca-Cola’s commitment to reuse

ATLANTA--- The Coca-Cola Co., the world’s top plastic polluter according to a recent Global Brand Audit, announced on Thursday a new commitment to use refillable or returnable glass or plastic bottles – or refillable containers at fountains and dispensers – for at least 25% of global beverage sales across its entire brand portfolio by 2030.

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Report | U.S. PIRG Education Fund

Product Recalls: Often Too Little Too Late

2021 reminds us the system is broken. Federal laws favor corporations, not consumers, and it can take months or years for the public to be warned about dangerous products.

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Report | U.S. PIRG Education Fund | Transportation

Progress Report: President Biden’s First Year

Following years of rollbacks, President Joe Biden began his term nearly a year ago amidst unprecedented environmental and public health challenges. Despite these obstacles, his administration has made significant strides toward restoring lost environmental protections and confronting daunting threats to our climate and public health, according to a new report by Environment America Research & Policy Center and U.S. PIRG Education Fund. 

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Report | MASSPIRG Education Fund | Consumer Protection

Not First Class: Flyer complaints soar as airlines cancel flights, deny refunds, ruin plans

Analysis of more than 200,000 complaints shows which airlines and airports do best and worst.

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Report | MASSPIRG Education Fund

Healthier Holiday

BOSTON -- The holiday season often entails spending a lot of hours in the kitchen cooking. As millions of Americans prepare holiday meals to share with their families, a new guide from PIRG’s research partner PIRG Education Fund offers tips on how to minimize unhealthy air pollution from cooking with gas in your home.

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Report | MASSPIRG Education Fund

Trouble in Toyland

Even though legitimate toymakers deserve kudos for making their products much safer over the years, too often, Americans end up buying dangerous toys for children for the holidays.  MASSPIRG Education Fund’s 36th annual Trouble in Toyland report shows that many of those toys are counterfeit or recalled products, but still make their way into consumers’ shopping carts.

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Blog Post

How to recognize fake online reviews of products and services | Hannah Rhodes

A fake review could be done by the company itself, by posting a fabricated positive review on its own site or by posting concocted negative reviews on a competitor’s site.

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Blog Post | Consumer Tips

National Consumer Protection Week 2022 | Teresa Murray

Every day during the first week of March, PIRG is providing consumer protection tips and tools to help Americans address some of the most common consumer issues.

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Blog Post

Why is nobody talking about outdoor gear's PFAS problem at Snow Show? | Emily Rogers

Much of our outdoor clothing and gear is waterproofed using toxic PFAS chemicals, but a few industry leaders are beginning to recognize it's not worth the impacts on our health and environment.

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Blog Post | COVID-19

How to keep food safe during a power outage | Isabel Brown

When the power goes out, the food in your refrigerator and freezer can get up to temperatures that make it no longer safe to eat.

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Report | MASSPIRG Education Fund

Two major recalls from the last seven months showcase the weaknesses in our food recall system: It often takes too long for companies and regulators to notify grocers, consumers, restaurants and food packagers, particularly regarding Class I recalls with a “reasonable probability” that exposure or use of the product could cause “serious adverse health consequences or death.” And once grocers find out, they aren’t required to contact customers who may have already purchased contaminated products. While many stores do quickly notify customers one way or another, the practices aren’t uniform and aren’t always timely. Meanwhile, people continue to get sick.

The ​​CDC estimates that one in six Americans become ill every year from foodborne diseases. Among those, 128,000 wind up in the hospital and 3,000 die.

News Release | MASSPIRG Education Fund

BOSTON-- When the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recalled 225 varieties of bagged lettuce, spinach and salad products in December because of potentially deadly contamination, it took the FDA a week to post a public notice on its web site. While many stores quickly notify customers of recalls one way or another, they’re not required to, and their practices are neither uniform nor always timely. Meanwhile, the ​​Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimatesthat one in six Americans get sick each year from foodborne diseases. Of those,128,000 wind up in the hospital and 3,000 die.

Blog Post

We see hundreds of food recalls every year. Some lead to people being hospitalized or even dying. Consumers should consider what they can do to help protect themselves and their families by finding out about food recalls quickly.

News Release | U.S. PIRG Education Fund

After decades of danger and more than 200 infant deaths, President Joe Biden signed the  Safe Sleep for Babies Act into law on Monday.

Report | U.S. PIRG Education Fund

Cities and states need to adopt policies and make investments designed to cut pollution and give people more options for getting where they need to go. 

Solid Waste

PIRG hosts webinar with MythBusters' Adam Savage on Right to Repair

Our national network and the Right to Repair team organized a summit featuring keynote speaker Adam Savage from MythBusters. He shared his thoughts with us on the movement and we discussed our current progress on the Right to Repair campaign.

 

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MASSPIRG Education Fund is part of The Public Interest Network, which operates and supports organizations committed to a shared vision of a better world and a strategic approach to social change.