08.17.18

Senators Isakson, Perdue Ask Army For Plan To Address Dangerous Lead Levels

Seek answers following recent report regarding on-base housing, including at Georgia’s Fort Benning

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Johnny Isakson (R-GA) and David Perdue (R-GA) today sent a letter along with Senators Tim Kaine (D-VA) and Mark Warner (D-VA) to the secretary of the U.S. Army raising concerns over a recent report about lead poisonings and dangerous lead levels in housing on U.S. Army installations, including Fort Benning, Georgia, which are endangering military families.

“We write to you today concerned about recent reports of lead poisoning at a number of Army installations. The health and safety of our service members and their families are of the utmost importance,” the senators wrote.

While the sale of lead-based paint is banned in the United States, many older homes still have the old paint on walls, which can become dangerous to children as it peels and chips. Young children are most susceptible to lead poisoning and face long-term developmental delays.

The report highlights cases of lead poisoning at on-base housing at Fort Benning, Georgia, Fort Knox, Kentucky, Fort Polk, Louisiana, Fort Bliss, Texas, Fort Hood, Texas, and a 2015 Department of Defense Inspector General report that found lead paint hazards at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. In the letter, the senators ask Army Secretary Mark Esper to provide a detailed briefing about what the Army is doing to keep military families safe and what they need from Congress to address this problem.

“We ask that you provide our offices with a detailed briefing as soon as possible outlining the immediate and long-term mitigation strategy to keep military families safe, provide medical treatment for those potentially or previously affected, make long-lasting repairs, and finally, provide legislative proposals or guidance on legislation needed to hold maintenance contractors accountable,” the senators concluded.

Click here for full text of the letter.

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Senator Perdue is the only Fortune 500 CEO in Congress and is serving his first term in the United States Senate, where he represents Georgia on the Armed Services, Banking, Budget, and Agriculture Committees.