blood lead testing king chavez 2013 2On February 26, 2013, EHC, the San Diego Housing Commission and La Maestra Health Center hosted a blood lead testing event for kids at King Chavez Primary Academy. This was our seventh blood lead testing event, testing 79 kids and bringing the total up to 542 for the program since October 2010. The testing events help families know if their children have any levels of lead in their blood and provide education on eliminating lead from their homes.

Blood-lead level testing is important because lead poisoning does not produce physical symptoms. Childhood lead poisoning is a silent disease. We don't see it. We don't smell it. Yet it is hidden in the paint of many of our older homes. There is no safe level of lead exposure.

Blood-lead levels can be detected easily with noninvasive portable blood analyzers. The blood analyzers require only a small pinprick to a child's finger and provide results within three minutes. Families with children who test positive are referred for further medical evaluation.

The blood lead testing events are a part of the "Home Safe Home" program. Visit the San Diego Housing Commission's YouTube channel for a video about the event.  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. at EHC for more information on future events.

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Winter is officially here, so we should be pro-active in reducing energy use before we turn our heaters and furnaces on. These simple tips will allow us to take control of our energy bills and be more responsible for our energy use. You can save money on utility bills and reduce demand on power plants to decrease greenhouse gasses.
leticia ayala winter energy saving tips web

  1. Layer your windows to keep drafts out and heat in. Use the existing drapes and curtains at night to add layers.
  2. Because winter-time brings more time indoors and less hours of sunlight. When we’re indoors, we should take advantage of natural light available. if you haven’t replaced all of your home’s incandescent bulbs with CFLs yet, make that one of your New Years resolutions. Replacing your bulbs can save 30% on your energy use immediately.
  3. Televisions, DVD players and Cell phones chargers all use energy even when they’re not being used This is called “vampire energy” To stop the Vampire from sucking your energy, use a smart power strip, which completely disconnects some appliances from taking energy from the outlet.
  4. Use a shower timer like this to ensure you take less than five-minute showers and avoid the temptation to take longer, hotter showers in the winter because it's cold. It takes a lot of energy to heat water, so you're paying more for your water bill and your energy bill.
  5. A refrigerator thermometer is helpful to ensure your refrigerator is operating properly. Best operating temperature to help save energy is at 28 degrees. Colder than that can waste energy and warmer than that may indicate that your door seals need to be replaced or you may need a new, more efficient appliance.
  6. One of your best tools is your energy bill. Read your energy bill and track your month-to-month usage and set conservation goals for you and your family. It’s fun to work together to save energy and save on our utility bills.

Happy Holidays everyone! Get outside, have fun and enjoy San Diego. If you have any questions or want information on free energy audits contact us at (619) 474-0220

As part of our Healthy Kids Campaign, EHC won passage of the first state law to ban the sale of lead-contaminated candies which significantly threaten children's health. The lead-free candy law went into effect in 2005.

Unfortunately, the threat of lead in candy still exists in California.

Red Vines Lead Candy

The CDPH sent a warning out last month telling parents and families that makers of Red Vines® Black Licorice  Twists, Family Mix, Mixed Bites and Snaps containing black licorice had lead levels exceeding California standards. The products have been recalled.

EHC asks you to be careful and discard any candy that is on the list below:

• Black Licorice Bar, 2.5 oz.
• Jumbo Black Licorice Hanging Bag, 8 oz.
• Black Licorice Tray, 5 oz.
• Black Licorice Laydown Bag, 7 oz.
• Black Licorice Laydown Bag, 16 oz.
• Black Licorice Jar, 4 lbs.
• Mixed Bites Hanging Bag, 8 oz.
• Mixed Bites Bag, 16 oz.
• Family Mix Laydown Bag, 24 oz.
• Family Mix Laydown Bag, 32 oz.
• Snaps Hanging Bag, 5.5 oz.
• Snaps Theater Box, 4.5 oz.
• Snaps Tin, 12 oz.

Remember to pay attention when buying any products for your children and families and look for EHC updates and information that will help keep you safe from lead poisoning.

You can help EHC with its efforts to continue working on making neighborhoods healthy and lead-free by donating here.

 

bloodleadtesting

EHC and the San Diego Housing Commission offer free blood-lead testing to help ensure your children are safe from lead poisoning and to let you know if you may have lead in your home.

Exposure to lead-based paint can be harmful to your children. Depending on the age of your home, you may have lead in and around it without even knowing it.

If there is lead in your home, your children may be at risk of breathing or ingesting dust as lead-based paint comes off of your interior and exterior walls, doors and windows.

Our free blood-lead tests are easy and non-invasive and provide results within minutes. If your child tests positive for lead, we’ll refer you to further medical evaluation.

At the event, we’ll have helpful information on how to eliminate lead from your home, including offering fee home inspections and other resources.

Free blood lead testing will be offered on Thursday October 25, 2012 from noon – 4 p.m. at the Neighborhood House Association, 841 41st Street, San Diego, CA 92113. Download our flier with this information. (en español)

EHC is committed to protecting our communities from harmful pollutants like lead. Our efforts in the past include passing a City of San Diego lead ordinance in 2009. We are working to improve the City’s lead ordinance to protect more homes and more families from lead poisoning. Learn more about improving the City’s lead ordinance here.

A World War II-era Linda Vista home being remediated for lead-based paint was the backdrop today for the official presentation of a $2.48 million federal grant from the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) to the San Diego Housing Commission. It will help SDHC and its partners, that includes Environmental Health Coalition, continue our "Home Safe Home" program, which will test homes for lead-based paint and remove the hazard to protect children from lead poisoning.



This grant will allow 175 additional homes to be tested for lead-based paint hazards, and 135 to be remediated over the next three years. Additionally, four blood testing events reaching 500 low-income children will be held at select schools and communities by Environmental Health Coalition and conducted by La Maestra Community Health Center. The San Diego Housing Commission purchased the blood analyzers through the "Home Safe Home" program.

Additionally, 150 low-income households will receive "Healthy Homes" assessments for such problems as rodents, roaches, dust mites, mold and moisture and poor indoor air quality.