“Lead is still present in many of our neighborhoods, but we can limit exposure to children and adults by working together on comprehensive actions…,” said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. “We’re committed to giving our nation’s children the fullest protection possible, and giving parents clear assurance that their children are safe from harm.”
According to the Lead Poisoning Prevention Program that the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene published in 2005:
New York City (NYC) has made great strides in reducing the number of childhood lead poisoning cases; since 1995 there has been an 82% decline in the number of NYC children less than 6 years of age who are newly identified each year with elevated blood lead levels (BLLs). Despite this progress, however, 3,490 NYC children were identified with elevated BLLs in 2003. Thus, lead poisoning remains an important public health problem.”
The EPA is Trying to push for further regulations and testing of buildings including tests of air quality encouraged by the 2008 Sierra Club settlement in conjunction with efforts put forth by the NYC Coalition to End Lead Poisoning. Small children, especially in economically challenged neighborhoods, are still very susceptible to the detrimental effects. The EPA acknowledges the problem is still pervasive and landlords along with the government at all levels need to work to take responsibility for the issue of lead poisoning, especially in dense urban areas in New York City.
In addition to trying to get more pervasive testing in buildings, the EPA is seeking to get a ban on lead weights used in tire balancing which contribute to lead particulates in the air.
If you believe you or a loved one may have fallen ill from exposure to lead here is a link to some of the symptoms of lead poisoning. You should also read this blog post about lead poisoning in New York children.