Better Business Bureau – www.bbb.org
Internet users can research reliability reports on businesses or charities as well as the legitimacy of online businesses and report problems. BBB Auto Line can help settle disputes with auto manufacturers. Find a local BBB online or for Long Island call 212-533-6200.
Consumer World – www.consumerworld.org
This is a public service website with links to hundreds of consumer resources available on the Internet. You will find consumer news, product reviews and shopping bargains.
Consumers Union of US, Inc. (CU) – www.consumerreports.org
CU is a nonprofit, independent consumer organization that researches and tests goods and services such as automobiles, appliances, food, and clothing. Some of the information is free via the Internet. Print publications, including subscriptions to the monthly Consumer Reports magazine, must be purchased.
Federal Consumer Information Center – www.pueblo.gsa.gov
Provides access to numerous materials which can be ordered (for free or at low cost) or viewed online. The Consumer Action Handbook (www.ConsumerAction.gov) provides sections on being a savvy consumer, filing a complaint, and a consumer assistance directory of major corporations, auto manufacturers, state and local consumer protection office, state banking and insurance authorities.
Federal Trade Commission - http://www.ftc.gov
NYS Government – http://www.ny.gov/
Navigate New York State Government for consumer information about complaints, insurance, consumer services, and sales practices. Provides links to government departments of interest to consumers, including the Attorney General's Office Consumer Hotline - 1-800-697-1220.
National Fraud Information Center - http://www.fraud.org
New York State Consumer Protection Board - http://www.consumer.state.ny.us
Suffolk County Office of Consumer Affairs - 631-853-4600 - www.co.suffolk.ny.us
Click on Department Directory to get to Consumer Affairs. On this web site, consumers can verify whether a contractor is properly licensed, get up-to-date information on gasoline and heating oil prices, read consumer tips and even see a list of the County’s “10 Worst Unlicensed Contractors.” The Office is divided into three Bureaus - Consumer Complaints, Weights and Measures and Licensing.
U.S. Consumer Product Safety - http://www.cpsc.gov
U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) - Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Clearinghouse (EREC) www.eere.energy.gov
Provides information on insulation and weatherization, heating and cooling, water heating, windows, lighting and appliances.
Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) - www.aham.org
A trade association of appliance manufacturers that develops and maintains standards for various appliance and administers certification programs for others, such as air purifiers. A consumer section allows users to find who makes what among member companies.
Stay Warm for Less - With escalating energy costs, maintaining a heat efficient home is on everybody's minds these days. Need some easy ideas for saving energy and keeping your home warmer? Learn some quick fixes to keep your home warmer today and some home improvement tips for the winter. Check the following links for more information:
|FABRIC AND CLOTHING CARE
Cornell University, Removing Stains at Home - http://www.human.cornell.edu/fsad/outreach/loader.cfm?csModule=security/getfile&PageID=47782
A popular resource on stain removal with directions tested in a Cornell University laboratory. Revised by the Department of Textiles and Apparel in 2002.
Fabric Net - http://www.fabrics.net/
Basic information about fabric identification, care, and sources. The Wisdom category offers advice and articles from sewing/quilting professionals. Click on Q/A and you will move into a chat area where viewers are discussing everything from fugitive dyes to how to start a business.
Fabric Link - http://www.fabriclink.com/index.cfm
Fabric care center for spot and stain removal. Fabric University provides information on fibers; burn test to identify textile fibers; science project ideas.
Insect Damage in Fabrics - Horticulture Leaflets Online
Cornell information: Beetles Infesting Woolens and Cloths Moths.
|FOOD - Safety, Storage, Preparation, Preservation
A Guide to Safe Chicken Barbecues - 144 kb pdf file
The famous Cornell BBQ Sauce listed.
American Egg Board – www.aeb.org
This site includes recipes, nutrition information, egg industry statistics, and food safety/storage information.
Centers for Disease Control – www.cdc.gov/foodsafety
USDA’s agency to address public health issues such as, listing of infectious and communicable diseases, and investigating foodborne outbreaks. Maintains a food safety image library; provides links to food safety partners.
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Drinking Water Quality – www.epa.gov
Fight BAC!™ - www.fightbac.org
The Partnership for Food Safety Education has a variety of food safety information, including hand washing and food handling, for educators, parents, and kids.
Food and Drug Administration – www.fda.gov/food/ 1-888-SAFEFOOD
Posts information on biotechnology, food additives, foodborne illness, dietary supplements, food products and packaging, seafood safety, recalls and the ‘Bad Bug Book’ on food safety.
FDA’s district office – 1-718-340-7000
Gateway to Government Food Safety Information – www.foodsafety.gov
Online resource from multiple regulatory agencies; offers consumer advice, info for kids, teens and educators, covers news and food safety alerts, report illnesses and product complaints.
Health Advisories: Chemicals in Sportfish and Game – www.health.state.ny.us/nysdoh/fish/fish.htm
1-800-458-1158, ext 27815
The New York State Department of Health (DOH) issues advisories on eating sportfish and game because some of these foods contain chemicals at levels that may be harmful to health. The advisories tell people which fish and game to avoid and how to reduce their exposures to contaminants in the fish and game that they do eat.
Moldy Foods - A factsheet listing foods to discard or keep.
Pantry Insects - Horticulture Leaflets Online
Cornell information: Beetles Infesting Flour and Bread, Indian Meal Moth, and Silverfish and Firebrats.
Suffolk County Department of Health – www.co.suffolk.ny.us
From the home page, use the tool bar at the left and click on Department, then Health Services. Multiple public health issues are addressed including restaurant inspection database and how to report a complaint; online food manager's course; SC sanitary code. The private well-water testing program can be found under the Division of Environmental Quality.
USDA Food Safety & Inspection Services – www.fsis.usda.gov
USDA Meat & Poultry Hotline – 1-888-674-6854
The public health department of the Department of Agriculture provides an extensive database of food safety information, regulation and policies, recalls, and food security. A virtual food safety specialist can answer questions about the safe handling and storage of meat, poultry and egg products as well as the prevention of food-borne illness. To report adverse reaction with meat or poultry, call the Meat & Poultry Hotline (listed above).
USDA/FDA Foodborne Illness Education Information Center – www.nal.usda.gov/fnic
Provides credible and practical resources for nutrition and health professionals, educators and consumers. Report an illness or file a product complaint, lists pathogens and contaminants in food, search food composition.
Food Marketing Institute
“The Food Keeper” a comprehensive consumer food storage chart prepared in cooperation with Cornell University, Institute of Food Science. Gives information about how to store many kinds of foods in the pantry, refrigerator of freezer. Storage times are meant to be general guidelines, not concrete rules. Also contains extensive list of links to food, nutrition, and government Web sites.
How Long Can I Keep it? - 50.9 kb pdf file
Home Baking Association – www.homebaking.org
Promotes home baking from scratch; resources for educators as well as individuals interested in knowing about ingredients and terminology, baking tips and recipes.
The Association of Cookware and Bakeware Manufacturers – www.cookware.org
Provides helpful information on selection, use and care of cookware and bakeware. Brand name index to help consumers contact manufacturers and an “ask the experts” contact.
National Center for Home Food Preservation – www.homefoodpreservation.com
Current research-based recommendations for most methods of home food preservation.
Food Safety - Pennsylvania State University - http://foodsafety.cas.psu.edu
Search the food preservation database for safe home processing methods; also maintains a food safety database. Resources for small food processors and entrepreneurs.
A free, 196-page publication can be downloaded from the National Center for Home Food Preservation website. The publication is also available in a spiral, bound book format from Purdue University. Single copies are available for $18 per copy, bulk discounted prices are available. Orders can be placed via phone (toll-free: 1-888-398-4636), fax (765-496-1540) or online at Purdue’s The Education Store.
|FOOD SAFETY FOR EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS
Keeping Food Safe During Power Outages 70.2 kb
Food Safety and Natural Disasters 29 kb
|RESOURCES FOR POTENTIAL FOOD ENTREPRENEURS
Northeast Center for Food Entrepreneurship (NECFE) – www.nysaes.cornell.edu/necfe
A joint program between Cornell’s Food Venture Center and Vermont’s Center for Food Science, the center nurtures small food-processing businesses by assisting entrepreneurs in business planning, regulatory adherence, food safety, process development and food commercialization.
NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets – www.agmkt.state.ny.us
Find out about food processing and licensing requirements for New York State. Application can be downloaded online.
Household Products Database (National Library of Medicine) –
What’s in those household products? Search specific brand brand-name products in categories such as landscape/yard, home maintenance, and hobbies/crafts. This site also allows browsing through a chemical registry for background on a specific ingredient and any health effects.
What You Should Know About Asphalt Roofing and Choosing a Contractor - This brochure provides information about hiring a contractor for installing asphalt-roofing shingles. pdf 353 kb
|MOLD & MOISTURE PROBLEMS IN HOMES
|Cornell Cooperative Extensions Resources on Mold
|Dealing with Mold in Your Home - 2.46 mb pdf file
|Mold in Homes - Are Children at Risk?- 1.39 mb pdf file
|Mold Information Sheet - 75 kb pdf file
|Mold Control and Clean up Basics - 10.2 kb pdf file
|The federal government’s authoritative resources on mold-related issues
Environmental Protection Agency, (EPA) - www.epa.gov - 800-438-4318
The EPA provides a comprehensive listing of helpful publications that you can either download for free or read online. One to them, A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home. Other topics include points to consider in deciding whether duct cleaning is appropriate and mold remediation in schools and commercial buildings.
Center for Disease Control (CDC) - www.cdc.gov/mold/
- The CDC is the principal agency in the U.S. government for protecting the health and safety of all Americans. You will find general mold information, how to identify mold problems, and clean-up recommendations.
|General consumer information dealing with mold-related issues
American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) - http://www.ashi.org/customers/faq.asp -1-800-743-2744
Frequently asked questions about home inspection and how to find a home inspector.
American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (AAAAI) - www.aaaai.org
Pollen and mold related information with links to other health Web sites. Allergist referral directory.
American Lung Association - www.lungusa.org/ • Local office: 631-265-3848
Click on air quality tool bar to find tip sheets on indoor air pollutants and information about the American Lung Association's Build a Health House program.
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation - http://www.cmhc.ca/en/co/maho/index.cfm
Various consumer information topics on moisture and mold, and renovation tips presented in language that is easy to understand. Topics included: measuring humidity in your home, choosing a dehumidifier, testing the air for mold, renovating damp basements. Condominium owners will find the publication on a guide to mold useful.
New York State Department of Health - www.health.state.ny.us/nysdoh/indoor/docs/mold.pdf
Indoor Air Quality phone: 1-800-458-1158 (ext. 27800)
Mold fact sheet includes steps for cleaning up mold.
National Library of Medicine Mold Web Site - www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/molds.html
Provides information in Spanish and English on molds, including clean up, health aspects, organizations dealing with it, and research.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) - www.osha.gov/
Provides recommendations to owners, managers, and occupants on how to fix mold problems in buildings.
|NUTRITION AND WELLNESS
Note: an easy portal to begin searching nutrition/wellness topics is with the USDA’s National Agricultural Library at: www.nutrition.gov
Provides easy access to government information such as My Pyramid and the latest dietary guidelines for healthy eating. Look up calories or nutrients in food, find dietary supplement fact sheets, discover cooking methods and receipes, learn about food labels, and get information on food safety. Federal nutrition assistance programs listed.
American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) – www.aicr.org
This site has information on healthy eating, including recipes, with special emphasis on cancer prevention. The Publications section is especially rich in information geared to consumers.
Color Your Diet Healthy - Recipes using farm fresh fruits and vegetables.
The Food Allergy Association – www.foodallergy.org
The Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) provides information on product alerts, tips, and new research on food allergies. Shop online for allergy-free cookbooks or call 1-900-929-4040.
My Plate – http://www.choosemyplate.gov/
Offers personalized eating plans and interactive tools to help you plan and assess your food choices.
|SEARCH ENGINES SPECIFICALLY FOR HEALTH AND NUTRTION INFORMATION
MEDLINEplus (National Library of Medicine) – www.medlineplus.gov
Allows user to search for healthy information from the national Institutes of Health and other reputable sources. Alternately, user may browse by topic. Other useful features include medical dictionaries and directories. Spanish language version available.
Healthfinder (US Department of Health and Human Services) - www.healthfinder.gov
This site makes it easy to navigate through the many governmental Web sites that contain health information for consumers and professionals alike. Has other useful features including a directory of health organizations and a drug/prescription database. Spanish language version available.
|FINDING RELIABLE HEALTH INFORMATION ONLINE
QuackwatchSM: - www.quackwatch.org
Quackwatch, Inc. a member of Consumer Federation of America, is a nonprofit corporation whose purpose is to combat health-related frauds, myths, fads and fallacies.