News Releases

Water Quality Association applauds changes to Washington, D.C. Healthy Schools Act

Requires schools and charter schools to install and maintain certified filters

LISLE, Ill. – The Water Quality Association applauds the Council of the District of Columbia for recently amending the Healthy Schools Act of 2010 focusing on lead in schools and other public places. The new law requires public schools and public charter schools to locate all drinking water sources, install and maintain certified filters for reducing lead at all drinking water sources and to test all drinking water sources for lead annually.

“We believe this is another step forward toward the goal of having safe drinking water for our school children,” said WQA Government Affairs Director David Loveday. “Testing is critical, and the use of filters will go a long way to ensuring the water in our schools is safe to drink.”

According to the new requirements, if a test result shows the lead concentration exceeds 5 parts per billion, the drinking water source must be shut off within 24 hours after receiving the test results, remediation steps need to be determined, and information about the test results and remediation efforts must be posted online. A list of all drinking water sources with information about filters, testing, and maintenance would also have to be published online.

The bill also addresses child development facilities, requiring each facility to install and maintain certified filters for reducing lead at all drinking water sources in the child development facilities. Annual lead testing is also required for all drinking water sources at these facilities, and if a test result shows lead concentration levels exceed 5 parts per billion, the drinking water source needs to be shut off within 24 hours of receiving the test result and remediation steps need to be determined.

The lead crisis in Flint, MI, last year brought nationwide attention to the lead issue in public water supplies. Children are especially at risk since lead exposure results in reduced cognitive development and neurobehavioral deficits. (More information on lead is available at the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) website: http://www.cdc.gov/nceh/lead/ACCLPP/blood_lead_levels.htm).

Selection of a drinking water treatment device or system for health contaminant reduction should be made only after careful investigation of its performance capabilities based on test results from a certified lab. WQA recommends treatment products that have been certified. Visit WQA’s product certification listings to search WQA’s database of certified products. Water treatment professionals can be found using WQA's Find Water Treatment Providers tool.

WQA is a not-for-profit trade association representing the residential, commercial, and industrial water treatment industry. Since 1959, the WQA Gold Seal certification program has been certifying products that contribute to the safe consumption of water. The WQA Gold Seal program is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Standards Council of Canada (SCC).

Wqa.org

# # #