Friday, January 21, 2022

Play

Despite a failed attempt in the U.S. Senate, more than 200 business owners call for federal reforms to strengthen election laws, and the U.S. Supreme Court deals another blow to abortion providers.

Play

President Biden gets cheers and jeers as he marks his first year in the White House, the Jan. 6 committee wants to hear from Ivanka Trump, and the Supreme Court rejects another challenge to the Texas abortion law.

Play

Expanded broadband akin to electrification in rural America 80 years ago; small Wyoming grocery store survives monopolization; revitalized Kansas town gets national recognition; and Montana's Native communities look for voter suppression work-arounds.

"There's No Safe Level of Lead in Kids"

Play

Tuesday, October 26, 2021   

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- There is a heightened effort this week to inform Ohio families about the dangers of a silent poison. Because lead is invisible and the damage it causes is delayed, addressing lead poisoning is tricky.

A recent study found 5% of Ohio kids have elevated blood lead levels, which is more than double the national average.

Dr. Matthew Tien, a pediatrician at MetroHealthSystem and co-chair of the MetroHealthLead Coalition, said even low levels of lead in the body can cause problems with growth, behavior and learning.

"Studies that have been done show that the higher the lead level, the more dramatic effect it can have on lowering IQ," Tien explained. "Obviously, the higher the lead level, the more terrifying. But finding even a level of 'one' is significant. There's no known safe level of lead."

Tien pointed out 40% of high-risk kids in Ohio do not get needed lead blood tests, and noted MetroHealth Hospital improved their rates dramatically in the past year by having children tested during medical appointments, instead of sending families to a lab.

During National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week, Ohioans are encouraged to have their homes and children tested for lead.

Timothy Johnson, policy associate for the Ohio Poverty Law Center and representative of the Ohio Lead Free Kids Coalition, said kids in Ohio have high levels of lead due to old housing and poverty. He explained two-thirds of houses in Ohio might contain lead.

"You will see issues like this concentrated in some urban centers, mostly in brown and Black neighborhoods that have seen historic neglect," Johnson observed. "But it's in our rural areas to win at Perry Heights, high rates there as well. So this is not just an issue that's concentrated in one part of the state or the other. It's statewide."

The Ohio Lead Free Kids Coalition has created a nine-point action plan for Lead-Free Children by 2030. It includes helping homeowners eliminate lead hazards, researching new ways to protect kids from lead, and improving supports for those exposed to lead.

Reporting by Ohio News Connection in association with Media in the Public Interest and funded in part by the George Gund Foundation.


get more stories like this via email
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2018 to fill the seat previously held by Republican Jeff Flake. (Flickr)

Social Issues

A wave of new Arizona voters in the 2020 election changed the normally conservative state to one where progressive candidates and ideas have a fightin…


Environment

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers plans to use federal funds for a project to help keep invasive carp out of the Great Lakes. It is proposing using …

Social Issues

Healthcare workers at an Oregon hospital have achieved what they say is a "win" after several strikes in recent months. Nearly 300 workers and …


Pennsylvania has over 300 million square feet of big-box building rooftops, which new research suggests could provide almost half the electricity that these buildings consume if they were outfitted with solar panels. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

As Pennsylvania continues to grow its solar-energy capacity, a new report found the roofs of big-box stores present a big opportunity to increase …

Social Issues

If Iowa wants to create healthier outcomes for its residents, advocates say there are steps policymakers can take right now to make it happen…

Over the course of the pandemic, North Dakota has received more than $350 million in federal aid to help struggling renters, but says it has sent back roughly 40% of that money unspent. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

North Dakota has returned a significant portion of the rental assistance provided by the federal government in the pandemic, but groups working …

Social Issues

Nearly 1,200 Hoosiers are about to have some of their student-loan debt forgiven, as part of a multistate settlement with the student-loan-servicing …

Social Issues

After a defeat on Wednesday, Democrats in the U.S. Senate say they'll keep trying to pass voting-rights legislation, and one Wisconsin group wants …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021