May 05, 2020

California Awarded $5 Million for Lead Testing in Child Care Centers

California's Child Care Centers will receive $5 million in grant funds for testing and remediation of lead in drinking water

lead in drinking water

The State Water Resources Control Board will provide approximately $5 million in grant funds for testing and remediation of lead in drinking water at licensed Child Care Centers. 

According to the California Water Board’s press release, the passage of Assembly Bill 2370 in 2018 requires that all licensed child care centers constructed before Jan. 1, 2010 test their drinking water for lead. They must do so within a three-year window and then the water will be tested every five years. 

“This bill would additionally require, as a condition of licensure for licenses issued on or after July 1, 2020, the health and safety training to include instruction in the prevention of lead exposure as a part of the preventive health practices course or courses component,” according to Assembly Bill 2370. The bill would require the child day care facility, upon enrolling or reenrolling any child, to provide the parent or guardian with written information on the risks and effects of lead exposure, blood lead testing recommendations and requirements, and options for obtaining blood lead testing, as specified.”

If a licensed child day care center is notified that it has elevated lead levels, the day care center must immediately make inoperable and stop using the affected fountains and faucets. The child day care center, according to the bill, must obtain a potable source for water for children and staff. 

The testing requirement does not apply when testing services are provided in the caregiver’s home caregiver, however.

The California Department of Social Services, which regulates licensed child care centers, plans to issue directives to centers in early 2020 regarding water testing requirements for testing. 

Once these are issued, information will be posted on the CDSS Provider Information Notices page. 

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