Why testing for lead helps kids…and how you can get free testing

Lead exposure can harm brain growth in young children, so it’s important for toddlers and preschoolers to be tested for lead if they have any of the risk factors.

Lead Testing Days

This month, we’re partnering with Best Starts for Kids, Virginia Mason, and the King County Medical Society to offer Lead Testing Days at pop-up locations throughout King County! Get your child tested for free at any of these events:

LeadSHOPS: testing for kids, and have household items tested, too

In addition to the Lead Testing Days, you can go to free LeadSHOPS where there will be:

  • free lead testing for kids
  • sign-ups for free home lead evaluations
  • free lead testing of household items and soil
  • resources to help you keep your family safe

You might be surprised to find out what items in your home have high levels of lead (see the comic strip below for possible lead-containing objects). I had dishes that belonged to my grandmother tested–and was shocked to find out that they were high in lead! I now only use them for decoration, never for eating.

My grandmother’s dishes tested very high for lead.

LeadSHOP locations and times:

Federal Way Kids DayAugust 07, 201911AM-3PM Steel Lake Park , Federal Way
Des Moines Back To School Fair August 08, 201910AM-2PM Steven J Underwood Park, Des Moines
SeaTac Back To School FairAugust 15, 201910AM-2PMValley View Park, SeaTac
Kent East Hill Farmers Market September 21st, 20199AM-2PM Morrill Meadows Park , Kent
South King County Family Health & Safety Fair October 05, 201910AM-2PM Auburn Family YMCA

A shout out to our partners for helping to make this happen: Washington Poison Center, Hazardous Waste Management Program, Horn of Africa, the Somali Health Board, BEST, and Living Well Kent.

Bonus: a comic strip helps explain how lead affects children’s growing brains

We also worked with Seattle artist Amy Camber on a comic strip to help parents understand how testing for lead helps children and why it’s so beneficial to get them tested when they’re age six and younger.

For more information about lead and to see your neighborhood’s risk for lead, go to www.doh.wa.gov/lead

Artwork by Amy Camber, written by Meredith Li-Vollmer.

Originally posted on August 5, 2019.

Posted by

I am a risk communications specialist at Public Health - Seattle & King County.

3 thoughts on “Why testing for lead helps kids…and how you can get free testing

  1. Why isn’t there testing in Kenmore Washington, where Kenmore Air has been flying in and out of Lake Washington for 69 years. I would like to remain anonymous, because I am an activist in Kenmore who has fought City of Kenmore for testing of air, land and water because of the proven presence of toxins in North Lake Washington. To no avail.

  2. Hi,
    We arrived with our toddler at the Denise Louie Community Resource Fair shorty before 1pm, and there is no lead testing booth. This page says it would be available until 2pm. Is this information accurate?

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