principle 5


People have a right to participate meaningfully in the making, implementation, and oversight of regulations meant to prevent human exposures to lead in drinking water.

  • All regulatory programs must reflect the fact that protection of the public from lead in drinking water requires not only proper implementation and enforcement of the federal Lead and Copper Rule (LCR) by water utilities, states, and EPA but also informed consumer action.
  • Water utilities, states, and EPA must acknowledge that affected people have first-hand experience and acquired knowledge about lead in water, as well as agency, diverse resources, and expertise. Therefore, their voices must be integrated into local, state, and federal regulations and policies.

  • All water utility- and government-sponsored committees formed to address lead in drinking water must include robust representation from the people, especially individuals who have personal experience with lead in drinking water or are members of historically marginalized communities.

  • People have a right to know that current blood lead screening practices routinely miss the populations most at-risk for exposure to lead in drinking water, including pregnant women, infants dependent on reconstituted formula.

  • When pregnant women or young children are diagnosed with elevated blood lead levels, they must receive environmental risk assessments at their homes, workplaces, and schools that include robust drinking water sampling. This sampling must maximize the chance of capturing worst-case lead-in-water concentrations to which the women and/or young children might be exposed.

  • All parents have a right to federal regulations that require proper monitoring and remediation of lead in drinking water in schools and daycare centers. All parents also have a right to free and timely access to lead test results, coupled with accurate information about what those results mean and do not mean, as well as detailed disclosure of the measures taken to ensure lead-free drinking water in all such spaces.