Imagine Englewood If and Legislators to confront lead-poisoning at March 26th Town Hall Meeting

 Lead Transferred during Pregnancy Emerges as Top Issue Facing Englewood Children. 

   

Chicago, IL—- On Saturday, March 26, 2011, Imagine Englewood If  will host a roundtable of elected officials assembled to discuss lead-poisoning and legislative remedies for the children of greater Englewood, a community that ranks highest in the nation for lead-poisoning and contamination.  The forum, entitled “Lead-Poisoning:  Who Speaks for the Children, Our Future?” includes State Senator Mattie Hunter and State Representative Esther Golar, as well as officials from EPA, the Chicago Department of Public Health, and Lead-Safe Illinois, who will serve as panel experts.

Lead is linked to life-long learning disabilities, behavior problems, violence and incarceration. According to the Health Department’s latest figures, 4,454 (39.3%) of Englewood’s 11,339 children, ages 0-6, were screened for lead-poisoning in 2008, with 567 (12.7%) recording elevated lead blood levels. Recent budget cuts and inadequate enforcement of current lead-prevention laws have resulted in fewer screenings. IEi’s main objective is to increase screenings and treatment for Englewood Children.

“Recent studies indicate that lead is transferred from pregnant mothers to the brain cells of their unborn children,” stated Dr. Howard Lee, retired pediatrician and IE’ board member. “It has been just heartbreaking trying to overcome the effects of toxic soil embedded in Englewood’s 4,000 vacant lots, as well as the lead content in the abandoned buildings and old housing stock,” he continued, “but these children’s lives are compromised before their first breath! Tis is a call to action,” concluded Dr. Lee.   

The Town Hall Meeting will be held at Imagine Englewood if, 6720 S. Stewart Ave., Chicago, IL  60621, at 3:00 p.m.   Refreshments and food will also be provided.  For further information, call 773.488.6704; FAX:  773.488.6705; e-mail:  jhill705@sbcglobal.net; website:  imagineenglewoodif.org.