City needs to protect kids from lead
Mar 08, 2017 | 786 views | 0 0 comments | 61 61 recommendations | email to a friend | print
In a show of solidarity, the five borough presidents of New York City drafted a letter to Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina calling for some simple measures to protect children after it was reported that elevated lead levels were discovered in the drinking water of some public schools.

Given the health crisis we have seen in Flint – and lest we be accused of fear mongering, this does not rise to that level – nevertheless there is no reason for the Department of Education to ignore their requests.

The borough presidents are calling on the city to provide bottled water at schools where the water is being contaminated by old fixtures until the problem is fixed, as well as provide free tests for exposure to lead for parents who want their kids to take advantage of it.

As the crisis in Michigan has taught us, it is the youngest among us who are most susceptible to the dangers of lead poisoning, so no amount of lead in the water of our schools is acceptable.

Kudos to DOE for admitting that there is a problem and its commitment to fixing it. But in the meantime, the department needs to adopt these simple measures to reduce the risk to the city's public school children.

The city also needs to conduct lead testing in all schools on a regular basis. Many of the city's schools are aging, and just because a school passed the test this time around doesn't mean that it won't experience a problem at some point down the road.
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