Why America’s Schools are FAILING to Protect Kids from Lead Poisoning…

Why America’s Schools are FAILING to Protect Kids from Lead Poisoning…


– ‘Sup you Beautiful Bastards, welcome to your extra morning news show. My name is Philip DeFranco. And today we’re going to be discussing the lead water crisis in the United States. When you hear the words “lead” and “water” in one place, most likely pops into your brain, Flint, Michigan. As we’ve covered on the main show before, Flint is the poster child for the country’s water quality issues. Back in 2014 city government officials decided to temporarily change the source of the city’s drinking water in an effort to save money. But those water pipes were aging, causing lead, a harmful neurotoxin, to leak into the water. And to make matters worse, officials didn’t treat the pipes with corrosion control chemicals, which could have prevented the lead from getting into the water. And all of this led to disastrous health consequences, especially for children. – [Offscreen] Pediatrician Mona Hanna-Attisha conducted a study before and after Flint’s water source was changed. It showed the percentage of children with elevated blood lead levels essentially doubled. – [Offscreen] Exposed children are at risk for a number of problems, including lower IQ scores, developmental delays, and behavioral issues such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. – I’ve noticed the speech, the articulation, and I’ve noticed… behaviors of anger. – Doctors say that there is no safe amount of lead for children. A child’s blood brain barrier is still incomplete, so that means that they absorb ingested lead at a much higher rate than adults which can lead to severe impacts on the developing bones and organs. Perhaps the most disturbing part about these health effects is that in many cases, they won’t even be known for months or even years down the road. While the nation’s attention has rightfully been focused on Flint when it comes to water safety, this problem is unfortunately much bigger than just one city. So to understand the magnitude of this issue, we had Cody Snell from the Rogue Rocket team jump into it. – [Cody] The water crisis in Flint was supposed to be a wake-up call. – [Offscreen] Can’t afford to treat Flint like it was some sort of an anomaly, and everybody feels sorry for the people of Flint. They’re grateful that it’s not happening to them. It’s happening to them. – Now that the Flint crisis has happened, it’s made me a lot more aware and I think I’ve just been so trustworthy of not only our government, our pipes, the foundation of the– where the water is coming from, that it’s not something that I’ve worried about. – More than 20 million people across the country get their water through lead pipes. – [Cody] A recent report showed that the United States still has a long way to go when it comes to protecting children from lead poisoning. Nationwide the CDC estimates that about 2.5 percent of children have high lead levels in their blood. In Flint, that number was double that amount in the year after the city switched its water source. But in many places, the figures are even worse. Much worse. A 2016 Reuters investigation looked at children’s blood lead tests in 34 states using data obtained from the Centers for Disease Control and local health departments. The investigation found that in nearly 3,000 areas, children have lead poisoning rates higher than Flint with about a third of those communities with rates four times higher than Flint. The source of the lead varies. Much of it comes from what’s known as legacy lead. Because lead-based paint wasn’t banned until 1979, many old houses are still likely to contain some lead. But as America’s infrastructure continues to age and deteriorate, lead in our water has become perhaps the most dangerous growing threat, with aging lead pipes being the most common source of lead in the water. The water it wasn’t until 1986, with the amendment of the Safe Drinking Water Act, that the government mandated that any new water pipe or fixture had to be lead-free. But that means there are still more than six million service lines containing lead throughout the country, pipes that connect a house or building’s plumbing system to a municipalities water main. Most of these pipes were built in the early to mid 20th century and are only supposed to have a lifespan of about 75 to 100 years. Once they reach that expiration date, they are far more likely to corrode, seeping lead into drinking water. According to a study by William & Mary College, just 0.5 percent of these pipes are being replaced each year, meaning that it will take 200 years to replace the entire system. But while parents can take steps to make sure that the water pipes in their own houses are lead free, they have far less control over their children’s schools. And in the years since the Flint crisis, testing at many schools has revealed alarming results. – [Offscreen] Weeks ago, leaders in Ithaca were forced to shut off the drinking water at all schools after recent tests turned up high levels at 10 of 11 city schools. – [Offscreen] A mother is suing her daughter’s Pennsylvania School District for its delay in telling parents that the water at her school was contaminated with toxic levels of lead. – [Offscreen] [inaudible name]’s daughter, Paris, arrives at her first day of kindergarten at the Marcus Garvey Academy next week. None of the water fountains or faucets will be working because the water is contaminated. – [Cody] In March, a peer-reviewed released by the nonprofit group Environment America found that nearly two dozen states are failing to protect students from lead in drinking water. States were graded on five categories, ranging from testing protocols to public disclosure and transparency. Of the 32 states surveyed, a full 22 received a letter grade of F. John Rumpler, one of the co-authors of the study, told us that he was surprised to find that lead in schools is still so pervasive. – We looked at testing results from Washington to Illinois to Virginia, all across the country. And everywhere that schools are testing for lead, they’re finding it in their water. – [Cody] Another reason that so many states received a failing grade is because of inconsistent and limited testing. Under federal law, the Environmental Protection Agency requires that only individual water systems be regularly tested for lead. The problem is only 8 to 11 percent of US schools operate their own water systems, such as well. That means about 90 percent of schools rely on municipal water systems for their drinking water And while that water is tested at the treatment plant, it is not federally required that it be tested after it goes through a school zone pipes, which is where lead contamination is most likely to occur. Even for states that do require schools to test their own water samples, Rumpler argues that the acceptable threshold of 15 parts per billion set by the EPA is still too high. – All of the medical practitioners are telling us now that lead can harm children at very low levels. That’s why the American Academy of Pediatrics is saying lead in schools water should be limited to one part per billion. So 15 parts per billion, that’s 15 times more lead in our children’s water than the doctors are telling us should be the standard. – [Cody] Rumpler also says that testing doesn’t always show the full picture of a school’s potential lead problem. – Lead testing is so variable that it will often fail to detect the lead or the risk that’s there. There might be led in the water one day, but not the next and not the next and not the next, but then a big slug of lead. That’s just the way lead interacts with water. It’s not a constant thing. So the only thing we can do is to prevent contamination, rather than waiting for it to occur. – [Cody] The report is not all bad news, though. Several states have made major improvements in their efforts to shield children from lead poisoning, including California which still only received a grade of C plus. But that was an upgrade from 2017 when the state received an F. One of the biggest reasons for the change was the implementation of a new law, the first of its kind in the country. That law required each public water system to compile an inventory of all lead water service lines in the state and provide a timeline for removing these lines. But perhaps no area of the country has done a better job tackling the lead problem than the nation’s capital. Washington DC received the highest grade in Environment America’s report, a B+. DC schools previously had one of the worst lead problems in the country. Tests done in 1987 showed that some taps were dispensing water with lead levels more than five times the acceptable threshold And even twenty years later, 75 percent of schools were still over the EPA’s lead limit. But since then, the city has taken a number of steps become the national leader in lead protections – The number one saying that DC is doing right that other states are not is they are proactively installing filters on every faucet and fountain where kids go to drink their water. They are not waiting for test results to come back to confirm that kids have been drinking lead. Instead, they are proactively preventing the problem. – [Cody] Rumpler says that many states have been wary of mandating that schools install these filters because of fears over their cost. – The practical reality is that these filters do not cost a lot of money When you look at the costs of children’s behavioral problems and developmental growth and all of the health problems associated with lead contamination, it’s just staggering compared to the to the to the low costs of prevention, especially measures like filters. – [Cody] Today the lead levels in DC’s drinking water are some of the lowest in the nation, a goal the rest of the country should strive for. – In January, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality reported that lead levels in Flint’s water were finally at their lowest level since the water crisis started which we really believe shows the importance of shining a national spotlight on this issue in order for officials to take our children’s public health, seriously. But with all that said now that you’ve heard but how Flint is far from the only US city who has to deal with this lead water problem, we would of course love to know your thoughts on this issue. Have you or someone you know been impacted by lead contamination? If you have a child, do you know when their school last test their water and if so is that information readily accessible? And given what we know about how harmful lead is for kids, Why do you think that so many states and so many communities have been so slow to react to this problem? I’ve know your thoughts in those comments down below. Also because I know that we’re talking about this, if you are worried about lead in your drinking water, the CDC recommends a few things. Only use cold water for drinking and cooking as hot water is more likely to have lead in it and it can’t be boiled away. If water has been sitting in your pipes for more than six hours, run cold water through your faucet for one or two minutes if the contamination is coming from inside your home. and then after you fill up a clean container with the water that you can use for drinking and cooking. Another easy step you can take is cleaning and changing the aerator on your faucet. And finally if you can try and install a filtration system on your tap that has been certified by an independent testing organization to reduce or eliminate lead. We’ll also include links down below for information about testing your water. But, that is where we’re gonna end today. Of course if you like this video you want to support the channel, be sure to hit that like button. Also if you’re new here you want more of the deep dives, the regular show, be sure to subscribe. But, with that said, of course as always, thanks for watching, I love your face, and I’ll see you right here back on this channel later today with a brand new Philip DeFranco show.

100 Replies to “Why America’s Schools are FAILING to Protect Kids from Lead Poisoning…”

  1. on the bright side all those kids have gained the "Lead Belly" perk and now take on 50% less radiation from drinking from irradiated water sources

  2. Only drink bottled water since water companies are banned from doing this and in bottled water production lead pipes aren't really used anyway.

  3. The government tested the children 1 year after they changed the water and forged the documents to say that any ki with high level of lead had a low level. Obama went to Flint and all the blacks thought he was gonna save the day. All of us in Canada thought he was the best President ever. What did he do. Drank a glass of filtered water in front of them said all kids get a little led. Compared it to licking a wall!!!!!! And said use a filter to drink it's safe for washing. It wasn't safe for washing!!! Watch Fahrenheit 9/11 if you don't know this.

  4. Lead pipes blow my mine we have our problems with Asbestos Cement Pipes but that's just water supply from pipes breaking down but seriously lead pipes are insane to think they are still in schools.

  5. I lost my aunt due to complications exacerbated by lead poisoning in Flint. Crushed my mom. They were besties. So thanks for covering this story.
    It makes me so sad that this problem isnt being taken seriously everywhere.
    Our infrastructure is getting old everywhere. This is what happens when it begins to fail. Without making drastic change and cooperating long enough to have reasonable forethought, the consequences of these issues will continue to spread and lead people to early death.
    Bridges will be next. One of the main bridges in the Bay Area is quietly crumbling. It’s stopped traffic multiple times and there isn’t really a plan for a new bridge. Even if there were, those don’t go up in a day. Thing is, it’s one of the main three bridges that connect the area. So….

  6. I'm in California and have a fish tank in which I get water from the tap and now I'm very concerned.

  7. You should talk to Jordan Chariton. He is the best informed person about Flint and the rest of the lead crisis.

  8. My schools sinks have lead in the water, so they told us not to drink sink water. But, water fountain water is okay.

  9. Just another spoke in the wheel of the dumbing down of the population agenda, we should be getting smarter as the availability of knowledge increases but the opposite is happening!!!

  10. The more one watches about US is appears to be the worst country in the western world… lead in school, no universal healthcare, electable coroners, people getting shot… the comparison between the US and EU looks terrible for the former.

  11. Not as bad as canada though, We had two students go to the hospital due to lead poisoning. Not to mention one teacher is in the hospital because of cancer caused by asbestos.

  12. It also boils down to companies with millions or billions of dollars not wanting to put their hands in their pockets for the solution – especially when it's children involved. It would be a long and arduous task to replace all of the lead pipes and/or install filters but in the long run it's probably cheaper for them to pay out the lawsuits.
    America doesn't do what's right, it does what's profitable.

  13. 4:07 it would be amazing if when people sued on issues for ones like these…. if they did win and get the money they would funnel it back into replacing the pipes instead of taking it for themselves. Don't know what happened but, if people used the money gained from suing for better things, humanity would be better.

  14. The country has been so slow about lead poison compared to many other countries is because lead wasn't banned from paint, pipes, gas, etc since the late 1970s. The rest of the world knew that lead was problematic back in early 1900. Yes, 1900. Over 120 years ago and yet the US was so slow because the lead companies kept lobbying Congress to keep their lead products legal, because of money and greed. Now the US has to play catch up with the rest of the world

  15. Flint’s water is STILL poison. They manipulated the recent tests by flushing the systems before testing.

  16. So I'm a college student trying to reach out to Phil for an interview with him or someone from his team. It's for my final essay of the degree, where I'm doing an analysis about his videos… Does anyone know how can I contact him? I have tried with the gmail that he had for inquiries and the Rogue Rocket email, and I even try tweeting Phil and the closest people of his team to see if anybody could give me a response. I have received no answer yet. I just need some internal info, like how do they chose every day the news and so on.

    I would really appreciate any kind of help! 🙇🏼‍♀️

  17. Why have they been slow about implementing measures or speaking up about it? …Money. It always comes back to money, where it is being spent, and how it could be spent.

  18. I live in Wisconsin (we got an F grade) and I would not be surprised if my schools water was contaminated. All of the water fountains were shown to have high levels of radiation and the building was built back in the 1920s.

  19. I'd like to know the levels here in the UK. I've lived in lots of old houses. All of these were not built with pluming but had it added later. I've always had the advice to only drink cold water even to fill the kettle and to always run it for a while. All of my schools were built in the victorian era so I wonder if they have a similar problem

  20. Here in Alabama if you get an abortion we'll lock you up for life and throw away the key, even if you were raped by a member of your own family. After all it ain't the kids fault if his mamas his sister and that kid can be born and live a normal childhood like everyone else! In fear o being killed by measles, lead poisoning and school shootings. After all nothing says "normal childhood" like the constant fear o death! Aint nothin wrong with a bit o lead in the water neither! My mama used to put lead in the water all the time until one day my pops (an by pops I mean both my daddy and my grandaddy cuz they was the same person) came over and wupped her for "Trying to kill me" even though mama only put that lead in the water so I could grow up big and strong like lead, which makes sense to me cuz leads pretty strong. Theres much worse things to be worryin about in life anyway, like chem trails left by cloud people turnin the birds gay.

  21. I live and work in the Ithaca city school district, I was in high school when they found the lead and turned off the pipes and put in water towers in all the hallways for us to drink out of. Our superintendent has gotten awards for being cheap af and for all 3 years they had the lead and then 2 more years I worked in a elementary school in the district they were saying it was in all the pipes in the ground and that eventually they would have to go in during the summer and fix it and it was gunna cost a bunch of money. Then out of no where a test was done in the middle of last year and they said it wasn’t in the pipes it was in the faucets and the water fountains and all they had to do was change those. I refuse to drink water at my school I bring in a water bottle every day I don’t trust it.

  22. Apparently my uncle was briefly in charge of Flint's water quality after the issue became public. Around that time his wife posted on Facebook that the issue at Flint wasn't even the worst case in Michigan in last few years. It just happened to get the media attention.

  23. Lead poisoning is no joke. I got lead poisoning from one of those houses that hadn't been updated. My parents sued the landlord for it. It turned my teeth pitch black, I was at the stage of organ failure, I had to go through a form of chemo. I'm lucky to be alive. I still have short term memory problems. This whole situation is appalling.

  24. Phil, you of all people should know that words and titles are important. The title of this video implies that schools and teachers are responsible for this epidemic. It’s a failure of government for sure but our educators are already put down for issues that have nothing to do with them

  25. This is all the same shit in every damn state. It is going to cost too much to be proactive and protect our children? Money money money money money, they don't care about children's health or future. To this day I still hear the same bullshit from years ago. Lead in the water, pollution, etc… "I don't really care, I won't be here to see the problems come to life or get worse" Yeah so ffff our kids and everybody else who will have a future past yours, got it. GFY! Thanks for the vid Phil!

  26. My cities schools have had this probelm for a long time, you can even taste that the water in the fountains are not normal. The students know not to drink it.

  27. In 2016 rowan university had high levels of lead in the water. I think it was around 15 ppb. They would truck in water for some of the dorms. My dorm was brand new so they didn't give us water, we had those nifty water bottle fillers that had that were safe because they supposesly had filters. My RA noticed that they actually did not put any filters in them so everyone was drinking lead water. He told his boss and eventually got an email from the president that it would be fixed and thanking him for his help. My RA said he wqs told he needed to be quiet about it though.

  28. Virginia received an F? I’ve lived here my entire life and I’ve NEVER stopped to think about lead being in my water.

  29. I think we need to add filters to any and all faucets for drinking water and then set long term goals for replacing all the lead pipes with some other non toxic material

  30. In my school (pennsylvania) our school had like 30x the amount of arsenic in the water than they should have and we didnt find out until we got the letter from penndot. School still hasn't said anything.

  31. Well Republicans don’t seem to care about children after they’ve left the womb, so I’m not overly optimistic that the government is going to take all the necessary steps.

  32. In CA my water tasted great. In Indiana now and it's undrinkable to me. I've no idea what's in it, but it doesn't taste good. It's clear though.

  33. Screw you phil, How dare you make this video without even mentioning our people, This is affecting the water of Native American communities. Even though the level of contamination is far higher and persisted longer than the crisis in Flint, there was barely a peep from the mainstream media. AND YOUR HELPING keep the media Blackout on Native Americans… Since the 1950s, waste from active and inactive uranium mines has seeped into the Navajo Nation’s water supplies, which has led to increased rates of cancer, genetic defects, Navajo neurohepatopathy, and increases in mortality.

  34. We had to write an essay about teens that were cool n stuff and flint was one of the places that a teen/ kid was helping (she lived there)

  35. Not Flint City officials only to build a pipe to Lake Huron and leave Detroit as the water source. The temporary solution was from State installed officials that controlled that made the decisions for the city.

  36. Is the lead content of local drinking water going to be included in the SAT's Adversity Score algorithm?

  37. Centerville, WA closed their water for months because of lead levels a few years ago. I'm not sure if they fixed it or if the water is being used again. My nanny kids had to bring their own water.

  38. Almost all the places I have lived in my life has had less contaminated paint, pipes and/or water.

  39. Well, just found out that the school district I was in from K-12 is one of the worst offenders of toxins in water, one of the middle schools having up to 112 times the EPA standard for lead levels. I mostly went to the more recently built schools, so here's to hoping I got lucky to not have too high of elevated toxin levels in my body.

  40. If your house or apartment was built before ,1980s you most likely have lead pipes. My water company sent out s letter just this month. The solution I'd to run water for 1-2 minutes. Get children checked by a physician.

  41. This comment is really late, but my school was tested positive for lead. What my school did was put some of those water coolers with the 5 gallon jugs for kids to fill and refill water. There are only about 10 in my school and i cant imagine it's too expensive

  42. MAYBE YOU SHOULD CHECK YOUR FACTS BECAUSE I THOUGHT THE FLINT WATER LEVELS YOU'RE REFERENCING WERE FAULTY BECAUSE THEY WERE FLUSHED BEFORE THE TEST

  43. I live in Maryland and I went to elementary school about 15 minutes from DC. It was a known thing thankfully in the 90’s that we were not to drink the water from the water fountains at school. Some kids still would if no one was looking, but it was kind of a thing of shame. Like eww, you’re gonna drink from that dirty water fountain? I think we were more concerned about other people’s, “cooties” than the water itself. But still! Good for us!

  44. My Schools is 39 years old, almost 40!!! The water taste like metal and looks silver, but nah well just build another school because screw yall, keep in mind that the school I go to is the biggest school on WA State so we have the most students and cant even give us the bare minimum of water?

  45. It's infuriating to see friends post online that Flint still hasn't been fixed, even though the levels are back to where they were originally before it all started. Is it fully clean, no. But like mentioned in the video, there are areas around the US that are worse. Way worse. But not many mention them because they're not as popular as Flint.

    Rant over.

  46. then other people wonder why people don't drink our water anymore, that is why almost everyone buys bottled water now, not saying it's way better, but it's a lot better than what a lot of us have in our homes..

  47. six out of my schools ten water fountains were tested and proved positive for higher levels of led in the water.

  48. I have been diagnosed with ADHD by multiple physicians and experts despite having no family history of the disorder. Stories like this make me wonder if my ADHD was caused by environmental factors instead of genetic ones and that terrifies me.

  49. Fun stuff lemme tell ya. My school’s water was tested and some of the water fountains’ lead contents were 27 times higher than what is considered “safe.” I blame my and only my school for my idiocy.

  50. Witches are taking out people`s souls and demons control the masses.See these videos by Win Worley,The Fragmented soul,Loosing spirits of God,his mass deliverance videos.See the video Routing demons by John Echardt.Part of Jesus`ministry was casting out unclean spirits(demons) as in the book of Acts,KJV.If you believe in Jesus Christ,REPENT.Learn to break off generational curses.Learn spiritual warfare and deliverance.Pray this,let my body reject every poison in the name of Jesus.Let my body organs be flushed by the blood of Jesus,in the name of Jesus.See the video deliverance from autism by Brother Carlos.Every single disorder is a combo of generational curses from God,for the sins of the Fathers,and or witchcraft spells and curses and demonic oppression.The real word of God(the king James bible) is health to your flesh,body,soul and spirit.Man shall not live by bread alone,but by every word that comes out of the mouth of God.See all videos by Win Worley,Derek Prince,and John EChardt.

  51. See these videos on youtube,Stupid in America with John Stossal.Was on TV like 15 to 20 years ago.NOW,we have common core.See the video The Deliberate Dumbing down of America.See the video Collage Conspiracy.See these videos on youtube,where they found the locations of Sodom and Gomorrah and Noah`s Ark.Tribulation is near.

  52. i am still amazed by the fact , that u cannot drink from the tap . and have to buy water bottles for everything that uses water, things like food and water are mandatory , i live in the netherlands . statistics show that we are worldwide the best in the way we treat water , transport water, and hold off water, so just because we got water covered , we save alot of money , and deal less damage to nature , because buying water in bottles most of the time is just not worth it. we can drink tap water. water in my country in a 1 liter bottle cost us 5 cents, while in most other country's its way more expensive .sometimes up too , 5 dollars for just water, which is in my opinion insane , and not only drinking is your problem. taking a shower. pools, water for animals. agriculture, everything u want or need that uses water is basically a risk . my friend once say'd to me, america is the number 1 second world country. reasoning behind it . 1. guns 2. water 3. economics 4. crime 5. murder, 6. education level. 7. gap between rich and poor. 8. healthcare 9. this is just a fun fact but, (more people know about kim kardashian , then there own country , 10. GANGS & corruption. all this in the so called greatest country in the world, while all this is not present in my country, and we are one of the smallest country in the world. liked your video ,

  53. This was actually one of the most informative and impactful deep dives I've watched thus far. Thank you guys.

  54. It's 2019 and we're at a level of tech where children are casually being poisoned… What the hell went so wrong? It is terrifying to imagine that we are less healthy now than years ago. That the mindset of the people in charge has corrupted to such a degree that this has been allowed.

  55. both kids of mine at their 2yr blood tests had lead levels too high (in NYC). Its awful, and thank you for shining a light on our aging pipes

  56. My old middle school had some disgusting bullshit since late 2018. There would be some roaches crawling around and it's not always the problem because it's being handle by eliminating them. What's mostly the problem is what's going down in the cafeteria. I never trusted the small bags of sliced apples. My best friend never ate the apples either but she sensed a strong smell into the bags. It had an alcohol smell and a few other strong smells. Almost all of the bags of sliced apples had them. And the school doesn't do anything about it. The burger i never wanted to eat after the big drama. My friend was feeling sick and he told me not to eat the burger. He told me to check my burger and mine was fine. But my best friend had hers worse. When she lifted the bun, the meat was still raw and abit bubbly. There was also something small and moving out of the meat. It made me wanna not eat any of the foods they serve to the students. They never handle the situation. They only tell them "oh don't eat it". And the last thing I want to say is the water fountain. There was some that had a fainted color. But there was one in gym class that looked brown and yellow mixed together. I felt disgusted and I couldn't trust of what's around the school because they never fixed that one water fountain in gym class after they said they were going to fix it. I always hear the lies they say when everything is gonna be fine. Honestly it's not. I'm glad I graduated and going to my first freshman year. Hopefully things will improve..

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