Even the smallest amount of lead poisoning can cause permanent, irreversible damage on children’s brains, organs, as well as their mental and physical health. A 20-year Case Western University study of 10,000 Cleveland Municipal School District students showed that children whose blood lead levels were above 5 micrograms per deciliter, the federal threshold for concern, were:
Children in Cuyahoga County account for 41% of the children in Ohio with elevated blood lead levels. Lead poisoning disproportionately affects low-income children and families of color. Higher lead poisoning rates fall within the boundaries of Cleveland’s historically redlined neighborhoods.