Nongovernmental Efforts to Address Lead Hazards

Project Funder: Alliance for Healthy Homes through a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

Project Partners: The University of Rochester, the Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporation (NMIC), and the Cleveland Tenants Association

Project Contact: Sherry Dixon,, 443.539.4156

Project Description: NCHH served as a consultant to the Alliance for Healthy Homes on a project, to analyze data for hundreds of dwelling units in nine jurisdictions across the U.S. that were found to have lead hazards in 2003-2005. While all of the units had floor or window sill lead dust hazards, only some units received lead hazard repairs. The aim of the program under which the data were collected was to motivate repairs through clear identification of lead hazards; the project did not have funds for lead hazard control.

The longevity and effectiveness of the lead hazard repairs are analyzed for a subset of units. This study marks the first time that effectiveness of lead hazard repairs performed in the context of participation by residents and community members (not local government) has been analyzed. In this study, community-based organizations are collecting lead samples in units previously investigated, and conducting structured interviews. Existing research has quantified the long-term effectiveness of government-funded lead hazard control projects. Yet there is little information about nongovernmental community-based efforts. This research will answer the question about whether lead hazards persist in high-risk housing in places where there are no federal funds or that are not served well by government programs.