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Rhode Island Housing Resources Commission and Community Leaders Celebrates Significant Lead Paint Poisoning Reductions during National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week

The State of Rhode Island, Housing Resources Commission and community partners held a press conference on Wednesday to celebrate the success of the Lead Hazard Mitigation Law in increasing the lead safe housing stock in RI. Since implementation of the Act in November 2005, the incidence of childhood lead poisoning in the State has been reduced from 6.9% to 1.1% according to the State of Rhode Island, Department of Health “2008 Childhood Lead Poisoning Report.”

The law has resulted in 23,000 rental units being granted Certificates of Conformance in compliance with the law. This has contributed to the decreased childhood lead poisoning by raising awareness about the danger of lead, educating landlords in lead safe work practices, and ensuring that rental units built prior to 1978 are inspected to ensure that there are no lead hazards.

”On this fourth anniversary of full implementation, we can say that the State of Rhode Island has effectively implemented this program to benefit thousands of Rhode Islanders. If we ensure that every single rental home is safe, we will all benefit from a healthier community in which children have all of the opportunities that they deserve” stated Susan Baxter, Chair of the State of Rhode Island Housing Resources Commission.

The event also highlighted the continuing need for lead poisoning prevention activities and served as a reminder to non-compliant landlords about their legal responsibilities to attend the 3 hour Lead Awareness Seminar and to ensure that their properties are safe and protect their tenants from lead hazards.

Rhode Island renters and buyers are able to check on a rental/property’s lead compliance with the state’s Lead Hazard Mitigation Act by visiting the Housing Resources Commission’s website www,hrc.ri.gov. By choosing “Lead Mitigation Certificate Search” at the top of the home page, a user has the option of searching by specific address, by street name across communities, or by an individual community. By clicking on the address, the inquiry will reveal the number of units, the floor of the unit, and the date of the last inspection.

The Housing Resources Commission provides housing opportunities for all Rhode Islanders and seeks to maintain the quality of housing in Rhode Island.

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