Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo

Wipe Out Lead

Why it Matters

Many houses and apartments built before 1978 have paint that contains high levels of lead (called lead-based paint). Lead from paint, chips, and dust can pose serious health hazards if not taken care of properly. Even more dangerous, when children breathe or ingest lead dust they can become poisoned and get very sick.

Thousands of children in Erie County have already fallen victim to lead poisoning and Western New York is a hotbed of lead paint hazards: one-third of all lead poisoning cases reported in New York State outside of New York City are located in nine zip code regions in Buffalo: 14201, 14207, 14208, 14209, 14210, 14211, 14212, 14213 and 14215--making our region one of the most dangerous for young children.

While lead is potentially harmful to individuals at any age, it is especially dangerous to children under the age of six. Lead poisoning causes permanent neurological damage including loss of I.Q., developmental delays, learning disabilities, memory loss, hearing loss, attention deficits, hyperactivity and behavioral disorders. In extreme cases lead exposure can result in organ failure and death.

The good news is that lead poisoning is 100% preventable and there are things you can do to help protect your family and our community:

  1. Have your child and home tested for lead
  2. Feed your children a healthy diet
  3. Learn about how to do home repairs and remodeling safely
  4. Avoid your family's exposure to lead
  5. Volunteer your time and resources to help us help those most at risk

By working together we can Wipe Out Lead!

Learn More


A new one-stop texting option has been set-up to help start a conversation for those who want more information on lead paint hazards or think they may have a problem with lead paint in their homes. Text 'LEAD' to 877-877 for testing information, to learn about lead-safe work practices and to get more information.

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