February 1, 2017

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Last weekend, legislation requiring lead-water testing in Illinois schools and day care centers sponsored by state Rep. Sonya Harper, D-Chicago, was signed into law.

“This is a social justice measure that will eliminate an outdated and unfair process of delivering safe drinking water to children,” said Harper. “We need to work harder to provide a better quality of water to all students, and there should not be a difference in the quality of water anywhere in this state.”

Harper was the chief House sponsor of Senate Bill 550 which requires more lead testing in Illinois’ schools and day care centers and ensures that lead does not exceed 5 parts per billion. Tests from last year highlighted that 113 Chicago schools had at least one water source contaminated with lead, and in other Chicago neighborhoods, schools are likely to have six times more lead contamination than others. The federal government banned the construction of lead pipes in 1986, but issues with lead still...

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