In a working-class area of Washington, D.C., J.O. Wilson Elementary tested high for lead in January after initial tests found lead, so contractors installed filters at the school. The school alerted parents 10 days after the city received sampling results, and it took nine days to shut off lead-tainted faucets, according to a City Council report.
After more than a year of flawed testing and faulty filters citywide, parents pushed the D.C. Council to introduce legislation requiring public schools to test water sources for lead, install filters and publish their annual lead testing results. The measure passed .
“The push at D.C. Council from constituents and concerned parents is probably the only reason that this gained traction, and there’s movement in terms of improving the legislation and improving the approach,” said Charles Swartz, a parent at Payne Elementary School in D.C.
And sometimes, parents simply want to know whether their children can drink the water at school.
A battery plant explosion in Maywood, a Los Angeles neighborhood, just over a year ago released high amounts of lead and magnesium into the community. Locals said the soil in their 盈彩彩票s and schools tested positive for lead contamination, but the water hasn’t been tested at all. Tap water in the area varies from a cloudy, white color to a muddy brown.
As a precaution, Lily Hernandez, a mother whose 6-year-old daughter attends Fishburn Elementary School, donates cases of water to the school monthly.
“I feel safer because I’m supplying the water,” she said. “Trying to get something done is an ongoing battle. The parents are concerned, but our voices are often ignored.”
Amy Molloy is a Veronica Guerin Dublin City University Fellow.