Tennessee Senator Bill Hagerty (R-TN) joined Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Raphael Warnock (D-GA) on Wednesday in introducing the Keep Children and Families Safe From Lead Hazards Act.

The bill which would direct the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to identify and remediate risk exposure to lead hazards, including lead wall paint and lead drinking water service lines, in Section 8 housing programs.

According to a press release by Hagerty’s office, the legislation would direct HUD to:

  • Conduct an annual risk assessment of Section 8 housing programs to identify risk exposure to lead hazards.
  • Develop an action plan to remediate lead hazards.
  • Require that lead hazards become a graded factor in Uniform Physical Condition Standards (UPCS) inspections.
  • Require an annual report to Congress on all Section 8 properties with lead hazards that are home to children under the age of six.

Each Senator released a statement in accordance with the bill.

“I’m glad to help steer this common sense effort to remediate risks—especially to young children and pregnant women—from lead-based paint and lead service line exposures in HUD-assisted housing in Tennessee,” Hagerty said.

Rubio said, “Lead hazards pose a serious risk to tenants, especially young children and pregnant women. It is unacceptable for HUD to ignore this threat. My bipartisan bill would ensure that exposure risks are identified and mitigated, so that no family in HUD-assisted housing has to suffer any devastating effects of lead poisoning.”

The third Senator of the bill, Raphael Warnock, said, “I’m proud to be co-leading this bipartisan bill which will improve public health for Georgians and Americans. We know that children with high levels of lead exposure grow up to have trouble learning and are more likely to develop a range of health problems as a result. The Keep Children and Families Safe from Lead Hazards Act will help to protect kids in Georgia and across the country—providing a crucial safeguard for our next generation and their bright future.”

– – –

Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to kaitlinhousler.reports@gmail.com