Fighting lead poisoning in Toledo to keep kids safe - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Fighting lead poisoning in Toledo to keep kids safe

Robert Cole, of ABLE Robert Cole, of ABLE
TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

Fifteen Toledo zip codes have been designated as high risk for lead poisoning by the Ohio Health Department.

So Monday, two organizations presented their stance to Toledo city leaders, asking for change when it comes to lead regulations.

Toledoans United for Social Action (TUSA) and Advocates for Basic Legal Equity (ABLE) are asking the city to come up with an ordinance that would require landlords to test their properties for lead.

"Lead poisoning is a devastating cognitive problem for children who are exposed to lead," said Robert Cole, a staff attorney with ABLE. "This can result in development and behavioral problems, this can result in loss of educational opportunities, this can result in a loss of economic opportunities."

Cole says studies have shown that children growing up in low-income homes are the ones affected the most by lead poisoning. He says right now there are federal and state laws in place, but there are ways landlords can get by them. So TUSA and ABLE want the city to step in.

"If you're going to put rental property on the market, and rent a home to a family with young children, that home ought to meet basic housing standards and that home ought to be inspected and certified that it's lead-safe," Cole said.

People from all different religious congregations joined in the effort to bring awareness to the issue, many saying it's just one more thing we can do for our community.

"It's one small thing, but important, that we can actually do something about, for the betterment of our community," said Pastor Jeff McBeth of Good Shepherd Parish.

Copyright 2013 Toledo News Now. All rights reserved.

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