Children in NYCHA housing test positive for high lead levels in blood from lead paint

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Updated on: Tuesday, June 14/New York Daily News 

Dozens of children living in NYCHA apartments where the city found lead paint have tested positive for dangerously high levels of the chemical in their blood in the last five years, city records show.

And in most cases, the Housing Authority had the same response: Do nothing.

There are tens of thousands of public housing apartments believed to contain lead paint — including more than 10,000 where children under 6 now live — that NYCHA as a matter of policy leaves untended, a Daily News investigation found.

Instead, the authority takes the position that lead paint is best left alone — except when a tenant moves out. That’s when they swoop in and clean up the apartment, not bothering with nearby units.

In the last five years, 202 children living in 133 NYCHA apartments tested positive for elevated levels of lead, city records show. NYCHA officials concede that about 48% of those children lived in an apartment “with known or presumed lead-based paint.”

In fact, when the city Health Department tested the apartments where those children lived between 2010 and 2015, they found 63 tested positive for the presence of lead paint.