This is a message we received from Tim (via the State of New Hampshire) on September 17th.
Thank you, Tim for writing this note. It helps to keep us going over here!
Yesterday I received some free test kits at the annual meeting. This morning, that very kit may have saved an infant from ingesting lead paint. I was asked to do an inspection on an 1800 era apartment duplex. The caller wanted me to look at the condition of the stairs that lead to the basement. This unit had an infant who had just learned to crawl and was crawling around on the floor. Because of my heightened awareness (that I had as a result of the presentation by Tamara Rubin), I knew to ask certain questions… The tenant had not been given any lead paint disclosure, and had no knowledge of any lead paint existing in her apartment. She had no knowledge of the consequences of lead and lead paint. I noticed paint dust on the old single-pane windows in this unit and the chipping paint that was on door casings and stairways. Because I had the test kit in my car from the Conference, I offered to test the area. While doing this I explained the hazards and dangers of lead paint to her. When everything I tested began to turn [the test swabs] red or pink she began to shake and cry and needed to sit. She thanked me profusely for my warnings.
Please express this mother’s – and my – gratitude to Tamara, and my thanks for having the opportunity to use this test kit. The cost of all of these kits combined just earned their weight back a million times over in less then 24 hrs of receiving that one!* Perhaps our future has one less child in special needs class or one less young adult in jail due to these events. The footer I use in my email could not be more true then today. We are FIRST PREVENTERS**.
Code Enforcement/Health Officer
City of Somersworth
One Government Way
Somersworth, NH 03878
**First Preventer: A First Preventer may go under the title of building inspector, fire chief, fire inspector, building official, code enforcement officer, electrical inspector, structural safety official, plumbing inspector or simply building safety official. But the labels merely obscure their common mission: To prevent harm by ensuring compliance with building safety codes before a disaster occurs. From hurricanes to tornados, floods, and earthquakes, building safety codes administered by First Preventers
play a major role in saving lives, protecting property and reducing recovery costs often paid for by taxpayer dollars.
*[The Lead Safe America Foundation gives away free LeadCheck® test kits at all of our public presentations, and other events.]