Chinese-speaking community is audience for lead-based paint exposure education effort

 Groups invited to apply for education and outreach project aimed at providing information to keep Beacon Hill-area residents safe from dangerous lead paint

Community based non-profit organizations are invited to submit proposals for an education and outreach campaign about the dangers of lead paint in homes to the Beacon Hill neighborhood’s Chinese-speaking community.

“This is a great opportunity for the community to partner with us and make a difference,” said Tracee Mayfield, project manager. “It is important to get this information out to protect children from a lifelong impact from toxics. This is a mission shared by Public Health – Seattle & King County, and the Local Hazardous Waste Management Program.”

Residents of the Beacon Hill region of Seattle are at a higher risk to lead paint exposure because of the age and condition of housing units. Nearly 60 percent of the housing units on Beacon Hill were built before 1960 when lead-based paint was common.

Remodeling activities in those older homes can disturb lead-based paint and spread toxic dust, which greatly increases the risk of lead poisoning. Professionals who work with lead-based paint are required by law to be trained in and use safe work practices. Less support exists for do-it-yourself repairs to a home.

In a 2011 study of high risk neighborhoods, half of the children with high blood lead levels are from the Beacon Hill area, where 19 percent of the residents speak Chinese.

The education and outreach proposal must not exceed $45,000, and submitted proposals should aim to:

  •  Inform and engage the Beacon Hill area’s Chinese community of King County Local Hazardous Waste Management Program services.
  •  Educate residents on health effects of lead and how to reduce childhood exposures to lead-based paint.
  •  Provide training on lead safe work practices for do-it-yourself remodelers.
  •  Identify relevant community issues and concerns that could impede the communities’ understanding of lead-based paint dangers, and further support LHWMP outreach services. 

This outreach and education campaign should be based on the “promotora” concept. The Spanish word for promoter, a “promotora” public outreach and education model uses trained community members who promote specific health issues.

Promotoras often live in the communities they serve, speak the same language, share in the culture, understand their community’s needs, and are passionate and motivated about the topic of interest. Promotoras help bridge cultural and linguistic gaps, build relationships and connect with community members.

Find the request for proposal 1105-12CMB under Solicitations at the King County Procurement website: www.kingcounty.gov/operations/procurement.aspx. For questions, contact Roy Dodman at 206-263-9293.

The Local Hazardous Waste Management Program is a partnership of local governments including Seattle, King County, the suburban and other cities in King County, working together to manage hazardous wastes and protect health and the environment. Visit us at www.hazwastehelp.org.