HUD Funding $13M
Today, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is giving 25 local grants totalling $13 million for projects to eliminate lead and housing-related hazards in thousands of homes across America.
According to HUD, the money will go toward “training workers in lead and healthy homes interventions; supporting research to improve home safety efforts; increasing public awareness, and evaluating outreach on controlling housing-based hazards.”
Lead has been banned in home use since 1978 as it is a toxin proven to impair children’s development and these hazards cost the U.S. economy $3.5 billion each year. Over the past 12 months, $232 million has been awarded to the Lead and Healthy Homes grants, here is what today’s additional $13 million looks like:
Lead-paint can kill children
“Every child deserves to grow up in a healthy home and yet far too many continue to be exposed to potentially dangerous lead and other health hazards,” said HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. “These grants will not only help to clean up lead and other home health hazards but will support innovative new approaches to make all our homes healthier places to live.”
This past week there was a heated debate here on AG about home hazards and what responsibilities agents should have whether it is written into law or not and lead was brought up in comments which makes this announcement quite timely. We all know the problems associated with lead-based paint contamination in children ranging from central nervous system and kidney damage, anemia, coma, convulsions and even death in higher levels and in lower levels lead to reduced IQ, learning disabilities, impaired hearing.
HUD estimates nearly 24 million homes still have lead-based paint hazards. Given that the average number of children per houseshold in America is 1.83, that means there are nearly 44 million children at risk for the health problems outlined above, so I applaud HUD’s efforts to creatively solve this problem.