Lead Advisory Service Australia
Aims to eliminate lead poisoning, protect the environment from lead
and to strengthen networks of stakeholders to solve lead problems

Lead Advisory Service News Volume 1 No 1
The journal of The Lead Advisory Service  ISSN 1440-0561

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The NSW Government leading the way in lead poisoning initiatives by declaring Lead Poisoning Awareness Week

By Michelle Calvert, Project Officer Lead Advisory Service (LAS) NSW

Dr Andrew Refshauge, NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for Health, declared Lead Poisoning Awareness Week at a launch at the State Library on Monday 20th October 1997.

It is only fitting, that what many experts believe to be the greatest environmental health threat facing Australian children today, be recognised by a Lead Poisoning Awareness Week. It is doubly significant because the 20th October, 1897 marks the date of the publication of the world's first medical article detailing childhood lead poisoning and its possible causes. It was written 100 years ago by an Australian.

This initiative is to be applauded and hopefully duplicated by other States, all of whom have similar problems but none of whom have similar projects. The NSW Government is the only government, State or Federal which is taking the lead poisoning problem seriously. The latest estimate is that over 200,000 NSW pre-school children alone have too much lead in their blood and that over 3.5 million Australian homes contain lead based paint, the major cause of childhood lead poisoning.

Surely it is time that other governments followed the excellent example of the NSW Government and also took some responsibility in dealing with this widespread and insidious health problem.

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