Protecting Children from Lead Exposure

September 13, 2016
Rep. Urban and Rep. Matt Ritter

Rep. Urban with Rep. Matt Ritter, Co-chair of the Public Health Committee

I recently joined my colleagues on the Children's and Public Health Committees for a joint forum on lead exposure in children. The forum was held to review Connecticut’s current efforts to screen children for lead and the progress made in reducing childhood lead poisoning.

Connecticut has required health care providers to conduct annual blood lead screenings for children under age three since 2009. Approximately 60,000 Connecticut children under age 6 were reported with lead exposure in 2013.

Connecticut has made great progress in reducing the number of instances of lead poisoning in children, but we still have work to do. The health impacts of lead poisoning can be devastating and long-lasting – one affected child is still too many. I will be working with the Department of Public Health and my colleagues in the legislature to explore additional prevention efforts.

Young children are most at risk for lead exposure, which can cause irreversible developmental delays and learning difficulties. The biggest source of exposure in Connecticut is lead paint often found in older homes. To learn more about this issue, please see the Department of Public Health's 2014 report.

Press Release: Rep. Urban Leads Forum on Childhood Lead Poisoning