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Wilmingtonians with lead paint in their homes may soon receive mitigation assistance

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Low-income families with young children will recieve priority for assistance.

Over a year after announcing a lead hazard reduction program, the city of Wilmington is moving along with its initiative to mitigate lead paint risks in low-income homes.

In October of 2019, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development provided Wilmington with a $1.8 million grant to establish the program. Soon, that program will be underway. 

City councilmembers this week moved to enter a contract with Precision Environmental, Inc. to provide risk assessments and testing services for the initiative. The city also authorized Cape Fear Community College to provide training.

The U.S. banned lead-based paint for consumer-use over 40 years ago. But millions of older homes still contain that paint. And Suzanne Rogers, the city’s Community Development and Housing Planner, says low-income families are especially vulnerable -- as old paint begins to chip and flake, putting children at risk. 

“Older properties are more affordable for rental or even for home ownership, for lower-income, low to moderate income folks.” 

The money will provide lead mitigation for eligible families. Home and property owners can apply on the City of Wilmington’s website



Hannah is WHQR's All Things Considered host, and also reports on science, the environment, and climate change. She enjoys loud music, documentaries, and stargazing; and is the proud mother of three cats, a dog, and many, many houseplants. Contact her via email at hbreisinger@whqr.org, or on Twitter @hbreisinger.