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Lead poisoning is the number one environmental health threat to children, and also considered the most preventable.

You may know that the week of October 22 is National Lead Poising Prevention Week -- although we work year round to protect our children from lead. Here are some important steps to keep your children healthy and create a safe place for them to live, learn and grow:

  • Check the year your home was built. Homes built before 1978 may have lead-based paint. Find out the year your house was built by asking your neighbors for a date range, checking online at, visiting your Tax Assessor’s Office or calling a realtor.
  • Update your home. It’s best to fix all of the deteriorated paint around the house using lead-safe work practices. Sanding, replacing doors and windows and other common renovation activities can create hazardous lead dust. Hire contractors certified by EPA, which are trained on how to minimize the dust and cleaning thoroughly.
  • Get your child tested for lead. Ask your doctor to test your child for lead, or follow EHC on Facebook and Twitter to find out when we schedule our next free lead testing. There is no lead safe level.
  • Remove lead-contaminated toys and jewelry. Visit this Consumer Safety Product Commission website to find out if your toys and jewelry contain lead.
  • Choose nutritious foods. A healthy diet helps prevent lead absorption into the body. Give children foods rich in iron, calcium and vitamin C.
  • Watch what you bring home. Don't take lead home with you! If you work in auto repair, shipbuilding, construction, demolition, steel welding or other industrial work places, don’t forget to wash your hands and face, change your clothes and dust off your shoes before walking into your home.
  • Keep lead out of schools. Support statewide bill AB746 to protect children from lead in schools by signing our letter here.

Lead causes learning disabilities, stunts growth, reduces IQ, causes aggressive behavior and is linked to teenage pregnancy and juvenile delinquency. Together, let’s do everything we can to ensure a healthy future for our children.

Letty Photo

Leticia Ayala
Campaign Director, Healthy Kids