House bill proposes multi-million dollar cut to lead poison prevention programs

Posted at: 06/25/2013 4:41 PM
Updated at: 06/25/2013 5:51 PM

The Appropriations Committee in the House of Representatives is proposing to cut million of dollars to help treat children with lead poisoning. Congresswoman Louise Slaughter rose on the floor of the house to say they shouldn't do it.

"At a time when we should be working to eradicate lead poisoning the majority's package cuts funding to the office of healthy homes and lead hazard control by over 60%," Rep. Slaughter said.

The main way children get lead poisoned is through old paint inside their house that chips and turns into dust which the children inhale. Part of this money goes to re-painting old homes. Part of it helps treat children with lead poisoning.

Some stats show the number of children with lead poisoning over the past several years has decreased. So the money is working.

But other numbers show that the number of children getting tested is down. Experts say that means there may be children out there who are lead poisoned and no one knows it.

Today -- the coalition to prevent lead poisoning held its annual meeting. They say your money that's used for their programs is well spent and they can't bear the thought of losing it.

"I dare not think about (the loss of money). Our lead programs in the city and county, they're so dependant on those funds and they've made tremendous progress and they really are using tax payer dollars most efficiently," Chair of the Coalition Mel Callan said.   

By that she means they don't duplicate services and they talk to each other.

The decrease Callan is talking about is a 63 percent cut. From $128 million this year to $50 million next year.

Click here to see symptoms of lead poisoning in children.

Click here to see treatment ideas for children with lead poisoning.