Did you know its National Lead-Poisoning Prevention Week? EHC works to ensure our communities understand the hazards of lead poisoning and what you can do to prevent children from becoming sick.

Lead is a dangerous metal, harmful to developing brains and responsible for irreversible developmental problems. Lead can be most commonly found in the lead-based paint and paint chips from homes built before 1979. Children may get sick by breathing or ingesting dust from this paint as it deteriorates over time.

Not too long ago, lead was present in many of our favorite candies. Environmental Health Coalition, the California Attorney General's Office and partners spearheaded the early 2000s movement to regulate lead levels in candy. After a thorough investigation, lawsuit and a statewide law, California now requires candy manufacturers operate within strict legal standards and undergo regular audits to ensure compliance. As a result, candy sold in stores today has been tested for lead levels and certified as lead free.

Most children with lead poisoning do not look or act sick, which is why it's important to get a blood-lead test every year until age six. It is also important for pregnant mother’s to get their blood-lead levels tested. The test only requires a finger prick and offers results in less than three minutes. You can find information on the next free blood-lead testing here.

Please explore our website to learn more about lead poisoning in children and read our frequently asked questions about lead-free candy to learn how to keep your family healthy and safe.

If you think your home may have lead-based paint, you may be eligible to have it tested and remediated for free. Call our community organizer at (619) 474-0220 ext. 141 for more information.