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Attend April 6 (Today!): Ending Childhood Lead Poisoning -Understanding Health through Community, Environment, and Policy
Wednesday, April 6
UC Sacramento Center 1130 K Street, Suite LL 22 Sacramento, CA
Light refreshments will be served at the panel and a no-host happy hour will follow at Pyramid Alehouse, Brewery & Restaurant, 1029 K Street Sacramento, CA 95814
Despite dramatic decline in the average blood lead levels of children, lead toxicity continues to be a threat. Lead persists in the environment and is present in older homes and the surrounding soils. In addition, the burden of elevated blood lead levels is not equally distributed; some communities have lead poisoning rates of 15-20% while the national average is below 2%. Finally, blood lead levels below 10 micrograms per deciliter, the current CDC level of concern, have been associated with substantial decrements in children's learning abilities and elevated risks for behavioral problems, such as ADHD and conduct disorder.
An interesting pair of articles on sustainable food systems recently circulated on the UC Davis Sustainable Ag list-serve. The first, produced by National Public Radio’s Weekend Edition, showcased apps for smartphones that can build any layperson into a bona fide foodie by telling the user what’s in season and where to find a local farmers market, or how to incorporate leftovers into a gourmet meal ( http://www.npr.org/2010/12/12/132009213/food-apps-for-foodies-to-drool-over ). The second article, published the November 22 issue of Newsweek, discussed how food is becoming an important marker of class in the United States. Journalist Lisa Miller took readers on a journey through several kitchens and markets around the country ( http://www.newsweek.com/2010/11/22/what-food-says-about-class-in-america... ).
Like many other environmental health issues, understanding childhood lead exposure involves land use history, politics, and the global economy. In a panel on childhood lead poisoning, we aim to synthesize the science behind lead’s distribution in the environment, the individual and societal implications of lead exposure in childhood, and barriers and opportunities to reducing lead exposure rates in the future. The panel is tentatively scheduled for Wednesday April 6th at 4 pm at the UC Center Sacramento-1130 K Street, Sacramento, CA 95814.
Lead poisoning continues to be a health threat despite efforts by the public health community to eliminate childhood lead poisoning by the year 2010. The removal of lead from consumer products, such as paint and gasoline, resulted in dramatic declines in the average blood lead levels of children. However, lead persists in the environment and is present in older homes and the surrounding soils. In addition, the burden of elevated blood lead levels is not equally distributed. Some urban communities demonstrate lead poisoning levels of 15-20% while the national average is below 2%.
Four panelists, representing public health science, urban ecology, policy makers, and grassroots organization active in California, will to discuss policy, science and community action on lead poisoning. The panel is open to the public and will include lots of opportunities for audience participation.