A $124,741 grant was recently awarded to the Texas Department of State Health Services by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to help reduce asbestos exposure in public and private schools.
Asbestos is often found in schools whose buildings were constructed before 1980. Materials containing asbestos fibers, including insulation, floor and ceiling tiles, and more, can become disturbed over time, putting children at risk for fatal asbestos-related diseases.
"[D]uring this time of year, we make a special effort to reach out to the community to raise awareness about the unique vulnerability of kids," the EPA stated. "Children are different from adults in how they interact with their environment and how their health may be affected by these interactions. These differences make them particularly susceptible to environmental hazards."
The $124K award will be used to ensure compliance monitoring and assistance, public outreach, inspections, and enforcement actions. The money will also help ensure that the workers handling asbestos materials at schools are trained and accredited abatement professionals.