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State Senator

Doug McCrory

Representing Hartford, Bloomfield & Windsor

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McCrory Votes to Address Issues of Mold, Asthma, Carbon Monoxide in Homes and Apartments

State Senator Doug McCrory (D-Hartford) today joined a unanimous and bipartisan vote in the state Senate to allocate $3 million in next year’s state budget to combat the problems of mold, allergens, asthma, carbon monoxide, pesticides and radon in Connecticut’s owner-occupied and rental housing—health issues which particularly affect growing children.

Sen. McCrory voted to support Senate Bill 357, which takes $3 million of the $10 million allocated for lead abatement projects in Fiscal Year 2019 (beginning July 1) and redirects that money toward other health issues confronting Connecticut’s children and their development.

“We have done tremendous work over the past several decades in Connecticut reducing the incidence of childhood lead poisoning. In 1995, six percent of kids under age six in Connecticut had alarming levels of lead in their blood. Now it’s almost half a percent. That’s great work,” Sen. McCrory said. “Now we need to turn our attention to some of the other environmental factors threatening our children’s health, like mold, allergens, carbon monoxide and asthma.”

According to a 2017 “Healthy Homes Surveillance Report” by the state Department of Public Health, a healthy home has several characteristics: it is clean, dry, safe, free of pests, well ventilated, free of dangerous chemicals, and well maintained. But of 1,500 homes surveyed (both owner-occupied and rental units), 99 percent had at least one deficiency, with the average being 14.

  • Carbon monoxide detectors were missing in 54 percent of homes. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas created when fuels like oil or natural gas burn incompletely. Heath effects from exposure to CO range from nausea and headaches to death.
  • Allergens caused by dust mites were likely in 33 percent of homes, because they lacked mite-proof mattress and pillow covers.
  • Mold was detected in 31 percent of homes. Mold spores—which can grow in unvented bathrooms or dryers, or hanging clothes to dry indoors—can cause asthma attacks, coughing, headaches, nasal and sinus congestion, and dizziness.
  • Both mold and allergens contribute to asthma, which is present in 12 percent of Connecticut children.

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