Graham Evans MP has organised an awareness event in Parliament to highlight the potential risks of children’s fancy dress costumes.
He said: “As a father myself I know that children love dressing up, particularly over the Halloween period, which is why I was shocked to hear about the horrific incident involving Claudia Winkleman’s daughter.”
Currently, the law classes fancy dress costumes as toys rather than clothes meaning that they undergo far less rigorous safety tests. But Sainsbury’s and other supermarkets have introduced more stringent testing following a campaign by the host of BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing, Claudia Winkleman, whose daughter, eight-year-old Mathilda, was seriously burned wearing a witches’ outfit while trick or treating last year.
Graham Evans, the Conservative MP for Weaver Vale, praised Miss Winkleman in her successful campaign, and hopes yet more can be done to raise awareness of the potential risks of fancy dress costumes. With this in mind, he has organised a Parliamentary awareness event on October 13, with Parliamentary colleague, Nigel Evans, in Westminster to encourage fellow MP’s to highlight the risks in their respective constituencies.
“I’m delighted that the Business Secretary Sajid Javid has given funding for Trading Standards to conduct spot checks on hundreds of retailers to ensure that costumes meet safety standards. I also applaud Sainsbury’s and other supermarkets for introducing more stringent safety checks and would now call on others to follow suit.
“I am hoping to raise awareness among my colleagues in Parliament of the dangers of such costumes so they can take the message back to their own constituencies. Ultimately, we need to work to close this legal loophole so that all manufacturers have to comply with much more stringent safety tests and I will lobby to do this. However, with Halloween just around the corner, the key thing now is to spread the message far and wide to parents about these dangers, and I hope that my awareness event will help to do that.”