Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal Bill to Protect Children from Window Blind Strangulation Signed into Law

New York, NY – Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal (D/WF - Manhattan) today announced that her bill, Brendan’s Law, named after 2-year-old Brendan McCarthy, who died in 2010 after becoming entangled in the cord of a window blind, has been signed into law. The law will require that any new or replacement window blinds installed in child day care centers are cordless.

“The signing of Brendan’s Law will protect other children from the serious safety risks posed by corded window blinds,” said Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal. “No parent should face the agony of losing their child in an accident like this, and I’m hopeful this common-sense law will prevent future deaths. A child can become entangled in window blinds cords in just a matter of moments and this law will ensure day care facilities take the safest approach by only installing cordless blinds moving forward.”

In 2010, Brendan McCarthy became entangled in the cords of a window blind while playing with his four-year-old brother at their home in Holtsville, New York. Despite emergency medical aid, Brendan’s life could not be saved. 

A report published by the American Academy of Pediatrics found that between 1990 and 2015, more than 16,000 children in the United States sustained injuries that required treatment in an emergency room after becoming entangled in window blind cords. Nearly one child each month dies from an accident involving window blind cords, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Despite immense opposition to the bill from the Window Covering Manufacturers Association since its introduction, the Association adopted new safety standards in 2018 ensuring that all stock window covering sold online and in stores would be cordless, beginning in 2019. 

The legislation, which was first introduced in 2010, was carried by Jabari Brisport in the state Senate.