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Queens Chronicle

Meng to Blaz: Speed up NYCHA lead testing

City hasn’t done it in any of boro’s facilities

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Posted: Thursday, August 1, 2019 10:30 am | Updated: 12:10 pm, Thu Aug 8, 2019.

Rep. Grace Meng (D-Flushing) says it’s time for the city to start testing NYCHA complexes in Queens for lead paint.

The congresswoman last Friday sent a letter to Mayor de Blasio urging him to speed up his administration’s lead paint testing initiative.

Meng represents three NYCHA complexes — the Bland Houses, Latimer Gardens and Pomonok Houses — all of them in Flushing.

“While the city rightly prioritized testing in complexes with the highest number of children under 6, the reported backlog on testing and failure to begin testing in Queens is unacceptable,” she wrote in a letter to de Blasio. “As of July 23, not a single NYCHA complex in Queens has been tested. Located in my district, the Pomonok Houses, in particular, have the highest number of children under 6 in Queens — fourth highest across all NYCHA complexes; but these have yet to be tested. In these houses, each of the more than 300 children under 6 are threatened by the dangers of lead poisoning.”

Side effects to lead exposure can cause reduced IQ and shortened attention spans in children, the congresswoman pointed out.

The city has lead-tested zero NYCHA apartments in Queens and Staten Island, and not more than 7.5 percent in the other three boroughs.

The Mayor’s Office did not immediately return a request for comment.

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