Statement on Lead Poisoning Scandal at NYCHA

July 2, 2018

It is absolutely unacceptable, inhumane and abhorrent that children and families have been living with lead paint conditions in NYCHA developments and that the city staff blatantly lied, misled the public and didn't share the gravity of the situation despite my repeated attempts of requesting information and updates.

The lives of at least 800 New Yorkers will be forever negatively altered because some people put their professions and compensation ahead of the people and the community. I will pursue any actions to immediately provide support for our residents' health and legal rights, as it is essential for the Mayor's senior staff, along with the staff at the Department of Health and NYCHA to publicly convey all available information for this egregious cover-up and negligence. I will formally request all information for our residents and New Yorkers including but not limited to how long were people living in these conditions, why weren't the conditions treated nor remedied urgently, who else is living within these conditions and what is the city's immediate plan of action immediately.

It is unconscionable that in an age of the lead-filled water crisis in Flint, Michigan, and when other environmental health issues have devastated communities, that New York is experiencing a preventable public health crisis such as this one. How can someone get unleaded gas but cannot live in a lead-free apartment? It will not be tolerated that just because residents are living in public housing, they are subject to inhumane conditions, a lack of respect and quality services.

Assembly Member Michael Blake