News, Notices and Information

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National Groundwater Awareness Week

Posted on March 11, 2019

Press Release from the CT Department of Public Health
March 11, 2019

MARCH 10-16 MARKS NATIONAL GROUNDWATER AWARENESS WEEK – CT PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICIALS ENCOURAGE PRIVATE WELL OWNERS TO TEST THEIR WATER

Hartford, CT – As many across the country this week observe National Groundwater Awareness Week, the Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) is encouraging more than 800,000 Connecticut residents who use private wells as their main source for drinking, bathing or cooking water to have their water tested for bacteria and other contaminants.

Connecticut does not require annual testing of private well water, leaving voluntary self-testing the only reliable way to find out if any groundwater contaminants have entered the well. Private wells in the northeast historically have found traces of the naturally occurring chemicals in well water. The Town of Glastonbury recently announced it would be testing private well water in specific neighborhoods due to elevated levels of uranium being discovered in local private wells.

“Water plays an essential role in everyone’s life. Yet for nearly one in five Connecticut residents who get their water from private wells, we have no way of knowing exactly what is in their water – unless we test,” said DPH Commissioner Dr. Raul Pino. “Proper maintenance and annual testing of private well water systems is essential to protecting the water quality and the health of those who rely on it. Testing is relatively simple and I encourage everyone in this state who uses a private well for water – find out what’s in your water. It’s good for everyone!”

National Groundwater Awareness Week is sponsored by the National Groundwater Association, a network of groundwater professionals nationwide whose mission is to promote public policies to enhance clean, safe groundwater and drinking water. 2019 marks the 20th anniversary of the observance of National Groundwater Awareness Week. The Connecticut DPH is encouraging home owners who use a private well to perform routine safety inspections and maintenance on their water system and annual testing of their well water.

Private well owners are responsible for the quality of their private well water. Wells are required to be tested just after they are constructed, but no annual maintenance or testing is required by law. Spring is generally a good time for an annual water well checkup before peak water use season begins. Private well owners should consider taking a few steps to inspect their wells for structural problems, protect it from contamination, conserve water, and most importantly, test the well’s water quality.

“Some contaminants such as arsenic and uranium have no taste, odor or color so the only way to know if these toxins are present is to have your well water tested,” advises DPH Epidemiologist Brian Toal. “These two naturally occurring toxins can be are found in the bedrock underneath our homes. Long-term exposure to uranium can lead to kidney damage, though these health impacts are treatable and reversible. That’s why testing your water is so important – it’s the best way to find out what’s in your well.” For more information and resources on how to test your well water visit the DPH Private Well Program website at: www.ct.gov/dph/privatewells or call (860) 509-8401.

See the Youtube link for easy instructions on how private well owners can better protect their well: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hO7kLhiJwaI&feature=youtu.be

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2019 State of the ImmUnion

Posted on March 04, 2019

“Vaccines protect both the individuals vaccinated and those around them from dangerous diseases (a concept known as “community protection,” “community immunity” or “herd immunity”). That’s because most vaccine-preventable diseases are transmitted from person to person. If a high proportion of the population is vaccinated and immune to a disease then the chains of transmission are broken…. read more here: 2019 State of the ImmUnion: A Report on Vaccine-Preventable Diseases in the U.S.

February 2019 Newsletter

Posted on February 08, 2019

Download a copy of our February 2019 Newsletter here.

APPLY NOW WHILE MONEY IS STILL AVAILABLE!

Posted on January 09, 2019

Download a copy of our January 9, 2019 Press Release here.

Date: January 9, 2019
For Immediate Release
Contact: Carol Slajda, 203-881-3255

PRESS RELEASE

Grant Funds Available to Valley Homeowners Address Lead and Safety Hazards

New Year!! Lead Safe Home!! $2.9 Million Dollar Grant Ending Soon!!
h3. APPLY NOW WHILE MONEY IS STILL AVAILABLE!

The Naugatuck Valley Health District (NVHD) is offering grant funded $$ to help Valley homeowners and property owners remove lead-based paint hazards with a program called Naugatuck Valley Emends Lead Hazards (NauVEL). NVHD is committed to protecting children from lead poisoning and making homes in the Naugatuck Valley lead safe and healthy. This grant funded money will help to protect children before they are poisoned by lead hazards or injured by safety hazards in their homes.

In 1978 lead based paint was banned in the United States but lead exposure and poisoning is still a reoccurring problem for children. Lead poisoning is caused by swallowing or breathing in lead dust that is created by chipped and cracked lead paint or on high friction services such as doors and windows. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states that no level of lead exposure is safe for children. Even low levels can be very dangerous for a child’s developing brain, causing reduced cognitive ability and attention span, impaired aptitude for learning and an increased risk for behavioral problems. Elevated blood lead levels can cause irreversible medical problems including hearing, speech, kidney, and brain damage. In adults, lead poisoning can cause high-blood pressure, nerve disorders, memory problems, muscle and joint pain, fertility and other problems that are lifelong.

Carol W. Slajda, program manager for NauVEL, said “Lead poisoning is 100% preventable but, once a child has been poisoned, there is permanent damage and the cost of care is exponential.” With education and intervention to remove lead from the home, lifetime health and behavior issues can be avoided.

Lead hazard interventions are currently underway in multiple towns including, but not limited to, Naugatuck, Seymour and Ansonia. One of the most impressive renovations to date is in Beacon Falls. A total of $33,000 in grant funds were provided for lead safe interventions with minimal cash output by the owner. This two-unit home built in 1920 was abated for asbestos, insulated replacement windows were installed, and new screen doors were added. Additionally, interior home improvements as well as repairs to the front and back porches with new safe home railings. The improvements to this home were all made possible by the grant funds provided to NauVEL by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

If you are interested in protecting your family, your renters and your investment please apply today, you may qualify for*:
- Generous financial assistance to remediate all hazards
- Free inspections
- Plans for lead and home safety hazard removal
- Relocation assistance during construction
- Up to $15,000 per unit of free money to keep your family and tenants safe!!**
- Remediation may include but is not limited to interior repairs, energy-saving windows, doors and more!

Homes must be pre-1978 and in Ansonia, Beacon Falls, Derby, Naugatuck, Seymour, or Shelton.

Remember if you are renovating a pre-1978 home you must use an EPA, RRP certified contractor.

Please make your New Year’s Resolution to have a lead safe home, for more information on the NauVEL Program and/or to find out if you qualify, apply online at www.nvhd.org/nauvel or call 203-881-3255.

Additional information on making your home a Healthy Home is available at https://www.hud.gov/healthyhomes.

NauVEL is a partner of Connecticut Children’s Healthy Homes Program.

*Other eligibility requirements include but are not limited to- privately owned housing, occupant income less than 80% of area median income and for owner-occupant properties a child under six must reside or spend significant time in the unit.

**Some restrictions may apply

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January 2019 Newsletter

Posted on January 02, 2019

Download a copy of our January 2019 Newsletter here

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