Lead paint, or lead-based paint, is toxic and potentially deadly, especially for children. That’s why the Wyandotte County Unified Government has a new program in place to bring attention to the dangers of lead-paint, test for its presence in homes, and where needed assist with controlling lead in homes.

Under the program, the UG will come out and test for lead paint, and they will remove deteriorating lead paint.

“If it is actually intact, they won’t remove it,” said Arlie Lindsey, a program coordinator with the UG’s Community Development Department.

Lead paint becomes particularly dangerous when it’s chipped and flaking. A lot of the toxicity comes from dust particles released from those chips and flakes.

Lindsey says they’re find lead-paint in highest concentrations in kitchens and bathrooms, around windows and doors. That’s because adding lead to paint made it much more durable, which was needed in high traffic, high dirt areas like kitchens and bathrooms.

While they may find lead paint on walls, it’s usually in very low concentrations said Lindsey.

Because lead is particularly toxic to children, the program is available to assist families with children under age six living in the home or visiting the home more than six hours per week or for homes where a member of the household is pregnant.

Funds for the program are made available through a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and have strict qualification guidelines, including income.

Minimum qualifications for participation in the program include:

The individual must live in Kansas City,

The person applying must have their name on the deed.

The house has to have been built before 1978,

Property taxes must be current or on a payment plan.

Income qualifications are surprisingly lenient. Individuals (family size 1) can earn up to $44,800 and qualify for participation in the program, with an additional $6,400 allowed in income per family in the household. So, the maximum income allowed for a household of four is $64,000.

For more information or to see if you qualify for the program, contact the UG’s Community Development Department, at 701 N. 7th St., room, 823, between 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. or call (913) 573-5100.

Lead exposure is checked through blood tests. The test can be completed at the Wyandotte County Health Department call (913) 573-6716.

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