This Note to the Coalitions focuses on two leading threats to children's health, both of which can be exacerbated by environmental conditions in older industrial cities. Specifically, it describes the prevalence of asthma and lead poisoning among children in NEMW states, explains connections between cities and these health threats, and discusses Congressional action to address these problems. According to the report, many NEMW states have asthma prevalence rates higher than the national rate. Additionally, sources of lead exposure, especially a concentration of older housing, are more common in the NEMW region than in other regions. On the upside, in 2010, NEMW states tested a greater percentage of children for blood lead levels than the percentage tested in the U.S. overall. Lawmakers in the 112th Congress introduced a number of bills to address the prevention or treatment of asthma and/or lead poisoning. Despite progress in managing asthma and preventing lead poisoning, these health problems combined still affect millions of U.S. children every year; as such, they should remain a policy priority for the 113th Congress.

For more information, contact , Senior Policy Analyst at the Northeast-Midwest Institute, or , Legislative Director of the Northeast-Midwest Congressional Coalition.