DESCRIPTION OF THE STRATEGY
Integrating lead safety into the ongoing work of weatherization program contractors has the multiple benefits of reducing energy costs, improving the indoor climate, reducing lead hazards in the homes treated by the weatherization program, improving the safety of weatherization crew workers and their families, and protecting the safety of residents. Lead poisoning prevention programs can provide training and incentives such as free or discounted HEPA vacuums and personal protective equipment. Options include developing a hybrid training curriculum, adding lead-safe work practices to standards or specifications, expanding monitoring and inspections to address lead safety concerns, offering complete lead-safe work practices (LSWP) training within the weatherization training program, subsidizing risk assessor training, and providing an XRF analyzer for each local weatherization program.
There will be increased awareness of lead safety among thousands of laborers and contractors.
Crews will be significantly less likely to create hazards such as lead dust, lead soil or deteriorated lead paint during weatherization work that disturbs lead-based paint.
The Department of Energy requires its state-level grantees to ensure that weatherization crews complete lead safety training if they will be working on homes built before 1978. This federal requirement prevents any confusion surrounding the need for lead safety training and ensures that all weatherization workers who operate in older homes will understand the consequences of repair and energy measures that may cut, sand, or pry lead based paint and how to avoid creating lead dust and paint hazards through proper containment, control during the work, and clean up. It is most efficient to have the state weatherization agency condition disbursement of federal weatherization funds on fulfilling the training requirement; the state can also incorporate into standard training any state-specific standards or other information.
Lead safety capacity is built in the wider community of individuals and community action agencies that may also conduct repair and renovation work using HUD funds or other resources. Transferable lead safety skills will cause laborers who work in weatherization to be careful about paint chips and dust when performing other types of work in older homes in the future. Weatherization program staff gains awareness of potential health risks associated with lead hazards and other housing condition problems. Finally, the initiative helps build capacity among contractors and awareness of lead-safe work practices that will likely transfer to other non-weatherization jobs—when working in older homes likely to have lead based paint.
Scope of Potential Impact
Regional (e.g. multi-county)
City - or - County - Wide
Specific (Targeted) Population
|Weatherization Agencies||Health Department|
Accredited lead training providers
Developing and implementing lead safety training for weatherization programs can be performed by existing weatherization staff. Existing HUD- and EPA-approved training can be downloaded from the Web. Ensuring that all workers are trained should be integrated into local staff orientation as well as local and state performance monitoring systems.
Other resource requirements:
There are limited resource requirements. The materials that are used in working lead-safely are already part of the typical weatherization toolkit. Training is best accomplished with some hands-on experiences, including visits to homes receiving weatherization treatment where the work is disturbing lead-based paint.
The state weatherization program should fund the training, provide other support, and help trouble-shoot, with assistance from the state’s lead poisoning prevention program as needed. States with centralized weatherization training centers should add lead-safe work practices to their existing training program. Other states, as well as local agencies, should equip the trainer(s) who normally provides training to deliver lead safety training so that it is added to the core weatherization curriculum. In some states this may involve getting accreditation for the trainer. Any class offered in LSWP must be approved by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, www.hud.gov/offices/lead/training/hudapproval_main.cfm. LIHEAP funds might also be used to subsidize the risk assessor training or purchase XRF machines as a “supply” line item.
The costs of offering training fluctuate; trainers may charge $600 - $1,600 for a day of training.
An agency or organization can quickly organize training since the courses exist, the requirements are in place from DOE, and no special training facilities are needed. Ongoing training is needed to reach new hires.
High. This training is feasible in all state and localities.
Little or no training will occur without the support of the state weatherization program, which must visibly and vocally support training. The state manager can play a critical role in supporting the effort, issuing clear policy requiring training to occur and providing funding and taking other steps necessary to ensure that the local programs and their staff complete the training.
http://www.waptac.org - A DOE-sponsored site for weatherization programs that describes LSWP training and the existing DOE requirement to complete training.