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Is Childhood Lead Poisoning A Serious Problem In New York City?

Despite decades of work to eliminate lead poisoning, many New York-based children suffer from this type of poisoning each year. While the problem has certainly improved over the years, it remains a public health concern upon which New York health professionals and lawmakers work diligently to rectify.

As one of the world’s largest cities, New York and its outlying areas contains many older structures, some of which still have at least trace amounts of lead. The government already mandates that all rental properties constructed before 1970 be certified as one of the following:

— Lead free– Lead contained– Lead stabilized

Rental units must also undergo re-certification periodically to make sure they do not pose a hazard to persons at risk such as pregnant women and young children.

Any attempts to both reduce and eliminate altogether the dangers of lead poisoning are good, but many feel more work is needed. In January of this year, Bill S2412 or “The childhood lead poisoning prevention and safe housing act of 2015,” was introduced that would enhance the work already being done to eliminate lead from New York City structures.

In New York, more than 10,000 children per year still have blood lead levels that the health care community considers elevated. The new bill would serve as a secondary prevention measure to support the primary prevention efforts already in place.

Fortunately, there are legal options for parents who have children injured due to lead poisoning. Such options will not take away the injuries but filing a lawsuit could help families recover the necessary funds to maintain the care their injured children need.

Source: Track Bill, “NY – S2412 | Enacts the childhood lead poisoning prevention and safe housing act of 2015; repealer,” accessed May. 04, 2015

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