California Legislation Signed Requiring Lead Testing in Child Day Care Centers

Earlier this week, California Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 2370 that requires testing for lead in drinking water at licensed child care facilities. AB 2370 requires the Department of Social Services, in consultation with the State Water Resources Control Board, to adopt requirements for testing lead in drinking water in licensed child day care centers for any potentially elevated lead levels. AB 2370 also requires child care providers to receive instruction on the risks of and how to prevent lead exposure and requires them to give parents written information about childhood blood lead testing requirements. Under AB 2370, licensed child day care centers will be eligible to apply for loan funding through the Child Care Facilities Revolving Fund in order to remediate lead contamination at the child care center and receive grants from the State Water Board for testing and fixing any lead problems.

According to a recent blog post from the Environmental Defense Fund, California now joins seven states – CT, IL, NH, NJ, OR, RI and WA – and New York City with similar requirements for testing lead in drinking water in child care facilities. Going beyond lead testing in schools and testing for lead in child care centers seems to make sense from a public health protection perspective. Communications to parents before and after testing can be challenging, as well as finding funding sources for fixture replacement.