Preventing Childhood Lead Poisoning

CLF calls on schools to test for toxic chemical during Lead Poisoning Prevention Week



October 25, 2018 (BOSTON) – Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) has called on school officials in Massachusetts to address the issue of lead in drinking water. Lead is a potent neurotoxin that can cause severe, lifelong health problems in children, even in small amounts.

“Parents shouldn’t have to worry about their kids being poisoned by drinking fountains in their school,” said Alyssa Rayman-Read, Vice President and Director of CLF Massachusetts. “In the absence of action from the state legislature, school districts must test for lead and make parents and officials aware of the results. The health of our children must come first.”

The consequences of lead exposure can lead to lifelong health issues, including attention disorders, loss of IQ, delayed learning, and behavioral, kidney and hearing problems. Lead has been found in many drinking fountains, old taps, and plumbing systems. Recent tests of more than 67,000 taps in Massachusetts public schools found that nearly half (49%) of these water sources contained some level of lead. A vast majority of these lead levels were greater than the 1 part per billion standard endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

CLF has sent a letter to school and health officials in Massachusetts urging them to test for this harmful chemical and immediately address any instances of lead in drinking water.

CLF experts are available for further comment.