Lead Paint Hazard Front and Center in New York City

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It started with the New York Times. Over the course of a week, the New York Times ran a series of investigative reports detailing how lead paint remains a problem in many areas of New York City, and how the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) falsely certified that lead paint inspections had been performed in hundreds of apartments that had never been tested.

Now, as the story spreads from the New York Times to Reuters to National Public Radio, the full extent of the city’s negligence is starting to be revealed. What initially seemed like a case of a few bad actors has blossomed into apparent mismanagement, with the NYCHA scrambling to address decades of willful blindness to dangers to the children of New York City.

Extensive follow-up has revealed a litany of damning facts. Despite laws requiring oversight, thousands of children in New York City have tested positive for elevated levels of lead in their blood. Certain geographic areas of the city are particularly hard hit, with some areas with exposure levels apparently equal to the crisis in Flint, Michigan.

Even as it struggles to maintain any credibility in the public eye, the NYCHA is signaling that it will still ignore federal mandates to test all apartments, instead choosing only to target living environments with children under the age of six. This policy fails to take into account that it is impossible for the Housing Authority to properly determine this information. All the while, children are suffering learning and other disabilities as a result of exposure.

If your child has suffered due to lead exposure, it is possible to believe that the NYCHA looked the other way for years while the health of kids was at risk. Please, retain an experienced attorney to help you hold them accountable for their bad actions.