WASHINGTON – On Friday, July 31, 2020, the House passed bipartisan legislation that included U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer’s (NJ-5) provision to underscore the need for lead-free drinking water at schools to protect children and faculty.
The provision supports the CDC’s National Center for Environmental Health which highlights the importance of every child having access to clean, lead-free drinking water at school.
“Every child deserves to drink water that’s free of lead and dangerous materials, and all parents deserve to know if their child’s water at school is safe,” said Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5). “With the House passing my provision today, we are taking a vital step to protect children and families from lead water — something for which I’ve been fighting for years.”
Earlier this month, the House passed Gottheimer’s provision to publicize lead water testing results at K-12 schools on American military bases both in the U.S. and abroad. This measure will provide military families with transparency about their children’s drinking water, by ensuring public disclosure of results from lead and copper testing at Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) K-12 military base schools.
Since 2017, Gottheimer has been pushing for transparency on lead water testing in schools in New Jersey, calling on the State to create a centralized reporting website and to enforce its school lead testing requirements.
In October 2019, Gottheimer joined New Jersey officials to announce clear steps to provide parents and communities with easy-to-access and up-to-date information on dangerous lead water in their children’s schools.
In November 2019, following Gottheimer’s urging, the State of New Jersey announced a new database website that provides parents and communities with school lead water test results.
In 2018, a key piece of Gottheimer’s bipartisan Lead-Free Schools Act was enacted into law, creating a targeted pilot program with existing resources to improve drinking water infrastructure in schools nationwide with lead in their water.