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HUD Announces Proposed New Lead Safe Housing Rule

HUD’s step forward aligns and supports the GHHI National Strategic Plan – a Blueprint for Action, Released this Summer 

September 1, 2016, Providence, RI – The Green & Healthy Homes Initiative joined U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD’s) Secretary Julián Castro and U.S. Senator Jack Reed at a press event here yesterday, where Castro announced a proposed amendment to HUD’s Lead Safe Housing Rule, critical to reducing blood lead levels in young children who reside in federally-owned or assisted housing.

The amendment would lower HUD’s threshold of lead measured in a young child’s blood to match the one used by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and would establish more comprehensive testing and evaluation procedures for federally assisted housing. HUD’s proposed new reference blood lead level would be lowered from 20 micrograms of lead per deciliter of blood (µg/dL) to five, and would continue to be aligned with CDC recommendations in the future.

“This proposed rule is a milestone in HUD’s fight to end the toxic legacy of lead poisoning, marking progress toward an end in sight for childhood lead poisoning in the U.S.,” said GHHI President and CEO Ruth Ann Norton. “We call on Congress and the next administration to go farther, to move the arc of public and political will and bring an end to the scourge of childhood lead poisoning within the next five years. GHHI has developed a Strategic Plan to End Childhood Lead Poisoning that would marshal the financial resources and regulatory tools necessary to end lead poisoning as a major public health threat within five years.”

Castro made the announcement while in Rhode Island to tour homes that received comprehensive green and healthy homes interventions, including lead hazard reduction services. The improvements were made by Rhode Island Housing, City of Providence Department of Planning and Development, GHHI Rhode Island, Community Action Partnership of Providence, the Rhode Island Attorney General and other partners. Sincere thanks for this collective success to Emily Benfer, Clinical Professor of Law, Loyola University Chicago School of Law and Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law.

About the Green & Healthy Homes Initiative

GHHI is a national nonprofit dedicated to breaking the link between unhealthy housing and unhealthy families. Formerly known as the Coalition to End Childhood Lead Poisoning, GHHI replaces stand-alone intervention programs with an integrated, whole-house approach that produces healthy, safe and energy efficient homes. As a result, we are improving health, economic and social outcomes for families across the country. 

GHHI serves as the national model for green and healthy homes interventions and is currently working in Austin, Atlanta, Baltimore, Buffalo, Chicago, Cleveland, Denver, Detroit, Dubuque, Flint, Jackson, Lansing, Lewiston Auburn, Marin County, New Haven, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Providence, the State of Rhode Island, Salt Lake, San Antonio, Staten Island and Greater Syracuse.


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