LEAD Action News vol 1 no 1 Feb 1993
Aims & Objectives of the LEAD Group
1.0. to convince the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) to change, at the June 1993 meeting, from recommending a blood lead 'level of concern' of 25 µg/dL (micrograms per decilitre) to recommending blood lead standards in line with the US Centers for Disease Control's intervention levels 10 µg/dL to spark community prevention activities, and 15 µg/dL as the intervention level for individual children.
2.0. to convince employers in lead and lead-related industries, and government agencies dealing with them, to foster responsible employment practices in accord with the principles of ecologically sustainable development and the rights of all workers, their children and future children to protection from the health hazards of the working environment.
3.0. to raise awareness among parents and health care providers, and/or to bring about legislative and policy changes, in order to achieve targeted blood lead screening of all 'at risk' 12-48month-old children by the end of 1994. Knowing a child's blood lead level provides the motivation for lowering it.
4.0. to raise awareness within the community and the various environment protection agencies, and/ or to bring about legislative, policy and behavioural changes in order to achieve 3-monthly average air lead levels on major roadways and adjacent to stationary point sources of lead emissions, below 1.0 µg/m3 by 1995 and below 0.5 µg/m3 by 2000.
5.0. to convince environment protection agencies:
5.1. to lower the maximum allowable lead content of leaded petrol to 0.3 g/L immediately, in line with the 1983 Victorian standard and to 0.15 g/L in line with Europe, by June 1993;
5.2. to organise the public education campaign required to achieve parts a), b) and c) of the second aim above, by for instance, informing motorists who unnecessarily use leaded petrol, why they should convert to unleaded petrol or other fuels, informing employees in all lead related industry how to prevent lead poisoning in their children.
5.3. to train and provide as a service to householders and proprietors of premises frequented by young children, environmental health officers to perform environmental sampling and/or interpretation of the results in order to list what steps should be taken to reduce the risks of lead exposure for children at that property;
5.4. to facilitate the assessment of the efficacy of products and processes which claim or are perceived to aid in lead hazard abatement;
5.5. to oversee the training of lead abatement workers and inspectors;
5.6 to ban or otherwise eradicate the use of unsafe lead paint removal practices and other practices which may increase lead hazards (eg indiscriminate dumping of sump oil from leaded petrol cars);
5.7. to limit new uses of lead and facilitate research into replacements for current uses;
5.8. to maintain a register of lead-contaminated domestic and childcare properties as well as parks, and ensure that contaminated sites have their lead risks abated before sale of the property;
5.9. to map the information contained in such a register, as well as all other: available information on past and present land use (eg the locations of premises licensed to emit lead) for use in directing resources for testing for other contaminated sites and for blood lead screening of preschoolers;
5.10. to oversee the purchase and hire to the public of lead testing and abatement equipment.
5.11. to fund a Lead Information Centre and service for parents in the Central and Southern Sydney Area Health Service, operated by the LEAD Group.
6.0. to convince health agencies:
6.1 to train paediatric health care providers to ask parents at each visit about any changes in their child's behaviour or circumstances which may increase the chi ld' s lead poisoning risk (eg child has started to crawl, or was present during removal of carpet) and by informing parents of the appropriate nutritional, hygiene, housekeeping, gardening and renovating measures required to reduce the risks of lead poisoning;
6.2 to achieve the goal of universal blood lead screening of all 6-72-month-old children by the year 1995;
6.3 to produce educational material which supports the above objectives, for dissemination by doctors (through liaison with continuing education authorities, curriculum development units, doctors' organisations and media aimed at doctors), early childhood centres, day-care centres, playgroups, Nursing Mother's Association groups, antenatal classes, local councils (similarly through organisations which have input into these groups such as the Australian Institute of Environmental Health, Australian Community Health Association, Kindergarten Union Children's Services, local government etc, and through the media aimed at these groups).
6.4 to investigate other sources of lead exposure with a view to legislating against them or otherwise lessening their effects. For example, to investigate the level of lead in packaging and its contribution to heavy metal fallout around municipal incinerators.
7.0 to convince health and environment protection agencies to cooperate:
7.1 to set up lead task forces which steer lead poisoning prevention activities and further research, with the involvement of community groups and;
7.2 to set up and operate community lead centres to carry out the relevant above objectives.
7.3 to form a strategy to achieve the elimination of childhood and foetal lead poisoning within one decade
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