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Friday, 21 April 2017 08:03

Thousands face lead hazards as Trump eyes budget cuts

Written by  Reuters

BUFFALO, New York Laicie Manzella lived in a rundown house on Buffalo’s east side when three of her children tested with dangerously high levels of lead in their blood. Her oldest son suffered nosebleeds, body rashes and a developmental disorder requiring speech therapy.

Checking her apartment, county health inspectors found 15 lead violations, all linked to old paint in this blue collar city plagued by lead poisoning.

A Reuters investigation found at least four city zip codes here where 40 percent of children tested from 2006 to 2014 had high lead levels, making Buffalo among the most dangerous lead hotspots in America. The rate of high lead tests in these areas was far worse – eight times greater – than that found among children across Flint, Michigan, during that city’s recent water crisis.

Federal support has helped Manzella and other families in Buffalo and beyond. This month, her family moved into a gleaming, lead-free apartment renovated by a local nonprofit with funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

This type of assistance may not last much longer. President Donald Trump is advocating deep federal budget cuts that would sap billions from programs used by state and local governments to protect children from the lifelong health impacts of lead exposure.

Read more at Reuters

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