This was the petition language sent:
To: House Speaker Shawn Jasper and the Republican House Leadership
As a New Hampshire resident, I strongly urge you to oppose SB 247. There are consequences to this bill that have nothing to do with its stated intent of preventing childhood lead poisoning.
It would subject all children to invasive testing at the ages of one and two, regardless of whether the child lives in an environment where lead is likely to be present.
The bill usurps the rights of parents by making them opt-out of the testing protocol, rather than establishing an opt-in procedure that would recognize the right of parents to make children’s health care decisions including testing.
The bill would hold a child’s education hostage to blood testing. The exceptions in the bill are not satisfactory.
SB 247 would also create a lead remediation fund to which landlords but not homeowners would have access. If the fund were truly about childhood lead poisoning, it would be available to all owners of lead-affected buildings.
Therefore, I urge you to reject this flawed bill. My family deserves sound public health policy that respects our rights.
The Republican-controlled House is on the verge of approving a bill that would subject children to unnecessary invasive testing, violate parental rights, and bail out a protected class of property owners – all in the name of public health!
SB 247 is a bill that’s supposed to be about remediating lead contamination. It not only falls short in that effort, but threatens to put these policies into New Hampshire law:
– The bill would require that all New Hampshire children be subjected to a blood test at age 1 and again at age 2 to detect lead levels – even if that child lives in a recently-built structure without lead paint, even if that child lives in a place with safe water.
– The bill has an “opt-out” clause for parents – but decisions about medical care and monitoring for children should be made by parents on an opt-in basis.
– The bill bars school enrollment to children who have not been tested twice (subject to parental opt-out), despite the fact that those children pose no risk of infection to other students.
– The bill establishes a fund to help landlords remediate lead contamination in their properties, but provides NO assistance to families owning and living in affected buildings nor financially compensate those landlords who took the initiative to do remediation on their own.
Sign the petition to tell Republican House leadership that New Hampshire families will not let the legislature force them to surrender parental rights and give landlords a bailout, all in the name of “health.”