Protect City’s Children From Toxic Lead Exposure

Target: Michael Regan, Administrator of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Goal: Implement immediate replacement of lead pipes endangering Chicago’s most vulnerable children.

Lead is one of the most damaging substances to which children can be exposed. It can severely impact the development of kids, even before they are born. It can also harm the functioning of vital organs like the heart and the kidneys. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), no amount of lead exposure is safe for children. Yet this agency has given a major city with a demonstrated history of toxic exposure four decades to replace its corrosive, dangerous lead pipes.

A recent disturbing study found that two-thirds of Chicago’s children six and under (a large percentage of them minorities) had concerning levels of lead in the tap water they drank. For 20 percent of these 130,000 children, the exposure is even more pronounced because these children must rely on untreated tap water. So, tens of thousands of youth will have to endure this toxic exposure for 40 more years simply because Chicago has so many lead pipes still in its system.

Sign the petition below to demand the EPA take swifter action to safeguard these young people from lifelong, preventable health problems.


Dear Administrator Regan,

Chicago claims it is in compliance with water standards because of an arbitrary mandate from this agency that ten percent or more of a small sample of homes must fall below federal standards for lead exposure. Yet a recent study demonstrated that 130,000 children within this major city are exposed on the regular to toxic levels of lead from the city’s many lead pipes.

Why is the very agency that claims no level of lead exposure is safe giving this city four full decades to remove these known toxins from its systems? Entire generations stand to suffer from lifelong chronic ailments as a result of this delay in decisive action. Chicago should not be given a bigger grace period because it has more threats. The very presence of these threats demands greater urgency.

Please do everything in your power to assist Chicago and its young people in eliminating their gravest public health risk here and now.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Di Nyau

One Comment

  1. This should not be happening today. We have been through this for so many years and it still remains an issue? The short paragraph we read is not filled with information. Where ever this continues is the problem of local officials. That there are remaining water sources being used which contain lead is against the law. Find which ever agency is responsible. Fire the officials involved in this situation. Do not pay benefits. Treat them like the criminals they are. Fire them, no matter who they are or what position they hold. They are harming our youth and they can not do so and walk away from the law.

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