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Some Detroit homes to get lead-based paint remediation

DETROIT (AP) — Free lead-based paint remediation is being offered to some households in Southwest Detroit.

Federal funds will pay for the program which is expected to remove potential lead hazards from 455 homes in the 48209 ZIP code over five years. Work is expected to begin in October.

Detroit’s Housing & Revitalization Department is accepting applications from interested residents.

Priority will be given to households with children younger than six, with expectant mothers or with children who have tested positive for lead, according to the city.

More than three-quarters of the housing stock in that part of Detroit was built before 1940. The area also has large number of low-income families and children younger than six.

Testing in 2017 identified more than 50 children living in that ZIP code who had elevated blood-lead levels.

Lead poisoning can cause severe issues with brain development, including learning disabilities and behavioral problems. Chipped or peeling lead-based paint is a hazard for children. Most of the houses in Detroit were built prior to lead-based paint being banned in 1978.

Remediating lead paint from a single-family home can cost up to $25,000 — a cost unattainable for many who live in the city, according to Mayor Mike Duggan.

“This program will keep kids safe and families in their homes,” he said in a release. “Just because a family isn’t wealthy doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a safe house for their child.”

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