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CUOMO AWARDS $56 MILLION TO PROTECT 30,000 LOW-INCOME CHILDREN AND THEIR FAMILIES IN 13 STATES FROM LEAD-BASED PAINT HAZARDS
WASHINGTON - Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today awarded $56 million in grants to protect an estimated 30,000 children and their families in 13 states from the health hazards of lead-based paint in low-income housing.
The HUD grants will go to state and local governments. The funds will be used primarily to remove lead-based paint hazards - such as lead-contaminated paint, dust and soil - in privately owned low-income housing where an estimated 30,000 children and their families live.
Children under age 6 face the greatest risk of lead poisoning, because their developing nervous systems are particularly vulnerable. In addition, children's play activities can expose them to lead-based paint hazards such as lead-contaminated dust, soil and paint chips.
The announcement comes during the first official National Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Week. Hundreds of community-based organizations around the country are conducting activities in observance of the week.
President Clinton said: "As America's children begin their exciting journey into the 21st century, one of the greatest gifts we can give them is a healthy start. Sadly, however, many children face needless obstacles to healthy development in their own homes. Among the most devastating of these obstacles is lead poisoning."
Cuomo said: "All parents want the same thing for their children that I want for my three daughters - the opportunity to grow up healthy and to achieve their full potential. These grants will protect thousands of poor children from being robbed of these opportunities by lead poisoning."
Cuomo awarded the Lead Hazard Control grants to:
CALIFORNIA - State, $4 million. San Diego County, $1 million.
COLORADO - Denver, $1 million.
CONNECTICUT - Norwich, $3.4 million. Manchester, $1 million.
DELAWARE - State, $2.7 million.
ILLINOIS - State, $2 million. Chicago, $4 million. St. Clair County, $2.8 million.
MARYLAND - Baltimore, $2.9 million. Prince George's County, $1 million.
MASSACHUSETTS - State, $1 million. Lowell, $2 million. Cambridge, $2.8 million.
NEBRASKA - Omaha, $2 million.
NEW JERSEY - Hudson County, $3.5 million.
NEW YORK - Albany, $4 million. Syracuse, $4 million.
OHIO - Toledo, $1 million. Mahoning County, $2.9 million.
WISCONSIN - State, $4 million.
The grants will be used primarily to remove lead-based paint hazards from privately owned low-income housing. Grant funds will also be used for:
Lead-based paint was banned from use in all homes in 1978 to protect people from the hazards of lead. However, many older houses and apartments still contain lead-based paint.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that nearly 1 million children ages 1 to 5 have elevated blood lead levels - amounting to about 5 percent of all children in that age group. The majority of cases involve low-income children.
Exposure to lead can cause permanent damage to the nervous system and widespread health problems. Effects include reduced intelligence and attention span, hearing loss, stunted growth, reading and learning problems, and behavior difficulties.
Cuomo announced a new life-saving Healthy Homes Initiative last year that is using TV commercials, newspaper ads, millions of brochures and a toll-free information line to help parents protect their children from lead-based paint and other deadly hidden dangers in their homes.
HUD, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also continue to jointly fund a toll-free phone line (1-800-424-LEAD) to give callers information in English and Spanish about lead hazards and about disclosure requirements for people selling and renting homes. Information is also available on HUD's internet site at www.hud.gov
Content Archived: January 20, 2009
Content Archived: January 20, 2009