New Hampshire Renews Efforts to Combat Lead Poisoning Statewide

Before lead hazard control. Note the chipping paint.

Before lead hazard control. Note the chipping paint.

After lead hazard control was performed.

After lead hazard control was performed.

New Hampshire Housing to conduct risk assessments, remediation and education events

With more than 300,000 housing units containing lead hazards statewide, New Hampshire renters and homeowners face significant risk of lead poisoning. Berlin, Claremont, Newport, Franklin, Laconia, Manchester, Nashua and Rochester have been identified as being the highest risk communities in the state. At least 55% of the housing stock in each of these cities was built before 1978.

“Lead knows no income boundaries,” said Gloria Paradise, Housing Program Administrator at New Hampshire Housing. “If you live in a pre-1978 home, you’re at risk.”

In order to better address these risks, New Hampshire Housing will be using $3.4 million recently awarded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to perform lead hazard control in 205 housing units, conduct risk assessments in 260 homes and apartments, provide skills training to a minimum of 125 people, and hold at least 100 community outreach and education events.

Children under the age of six who live in housing that was built before 1978 are at a higher risk of becoming lead poisoned, which can result in permanent damage to the brain and nervous system, developmental delays, as well as behavior and learning problems. In 2013, the Healthy Homes & Lead Poisoning Prevention Program documented more than 1,000 children in New Hampshire who had been poisoned by lead.

“The prevalence of lead in New Hampshire, particularly in communities that have been identified as high-risk, is something that we are working in collaboration with other agencies to address,” said Dean Christon, Executive Director of New Hampshire Housing. “This grant from HUD will allow us to educate residents about lead hazards and provide property owners with the resources they need to make their housing safe for families.”

If you suspect that you have lead in your home, contact your local Community Action Agency (http://www.puc.nh.gov/consumer/communityactionagencies.htm) for information about next steps. You can also contact New Hampshire Housing at 1-800-640-7239 x9387 for a free home lead test kit. Property owners may be eligible for up to $12,000 toward lead remediation if they are under order to remediate and up to $6,000 toward lead remediation if they are not under order. Priority will be given to units where a child has been poisoned by lead and buildings that house low- and moderate-income families with children under the age of six.

For more information, please visit www.nhhfa.org and click on the Lead Hazard Control Program link.

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: