26 THE QUEENS COURIER • JULY 12, 2018 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM
Paying for NYCHA’s disgraces
Damage to the central nervous system. Decreased bone and muscle
growth. Speech and language problems. Delayed mental development.
And, for every child who suff ers these symptoms of lead poisoning, a life
sentence of related complications.
More than 800 children living in public housing controlled by the New
York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) have elevated levels of lead fl owing
through their blood, according to a New York Daily News report on June
30. Th e report further underscored the horrifi c consequences of the agency’s
mismanagement and outright deception when it comes to maintaining
hundreds of buildings in the city — including dozens in Queens — home to
thousands of low-income New Yorkers.
In recent months, NYCHA has rightly been exposed and publicly shamed
for a fetid blend of incompetence and failed leadership. Th e city, pursuant
to a case launched by federal prosecutors, agreed to allow for a court-authorized
monitor to oversee eff orts to bring NYCHA buildings into compliance
with federal lead paint and other housing regulations.
Th at was preceded, of course, by a change in NYCHA leadership — specifi
cally the resignation of its embattled chair, Shola Olatoye — and repeated
vows by Mayor Bill de Blasio that the entire NYCHA system would be overhauled
and made safer for its tenants.
De Blasio must accept responsibility for the shame of NYCHA; aft er all, he
is the highest-ranking offi cial in the city, and the buck always stops with the
person at the top. However, NYCHA’s woes are the end result of decades of
ignorance by city government.
Lead paint was outlawed nationwide in the 1970s, long aft er the NYCHA
housing complexes were built and painted. Like asbestos, there’s no serious
risk of exposure to lead paint as long as it’s not cracked or chipped.
Lead paint, however, dries out, cracks and crumbles over time. Th e lead
paint dust and chips accumulate on the fl oor and on toys, all of which are
touched and then either inhaled or ingested by young children.
Over the years, the city has doggedly pursued bad landlords who fail to
keep up their buildings and expose their tenants to squalid conditions. Th e
city, of course, was right to do this — but all the while, NYCHA failed to live
up to such a high standard of care.
Now the city must do whatever it takes to address the problems at NYCHA
and bring all of its buildings up to code — not only to remove the lead paint
hazards, but also to eliminate the regular infrastructure problems NYCHA
residents experience every day.
In short, the city shouldn’t just seek minimum compliance with laws and
promises of reform — the city must go above and beyond it.
Th e children of NYCHA deserve no less.
PUBLISHER & EDITOR
VP, EVENTS, WEB & SOCIAL MEDIA
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER
ASSISTANT TO PUBLISHER
PRESIDENT & CEO
JOSHUA A. SCHNEPS
KATRINA MEDOFF, RYAN KELLEY, JENNA BAGCAL
CLIFF KASDEN, SAMANTHA SOHMER, ELIZABETH ALONI
JOSHUA A. SCHNEPS
Schneps Communications, 38-15 Bell Blvd., Bayside, NY 11361
718-224-5863 • Fax 718-224-5441
editorial e-mail: email@example.com
for advertising e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Entire Contents Copyright 2017 by The Queens Courier
All letters sent to THE QUEENS COURIER should be brief and are subject to condensing. Writers should
include a full address and home and offi ce telephone numbers, where available, as well as affi liation, indicating
special interest. Anonymous letters are not printed. Name withheld on request.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR, AS WELL AS OP-ED PIECES IN NO WAY REFLECT THE PAPER’S POSITION.
No such ad or any part thereof may be reproduced without prior permission of THE QUEENS COURIER. The
publishers will not be responsible for any error in advertising beyond the cost of the space occupied by the
error. Errors must be reported to THE QUEENS COURIER within fi ve days of publication. Ad position cannot be
guaranteed unless paid prior to publication. Schneps Communications assumes no liability for the content or
reply to any ads. The advertiser assumes all liability for the content of and all replies. The advertiser agrees to hold
THE QUEENS COURIER and its employees harmless from all cost, expenses, liabilities, and damages resulting
from or caused by the publication or recording placed by the advertiser or any reply to any such advertisement.
LIC INDEPENDENCE DAY // PHOTO VIA INSTAGRAM @zurbaran1
Send us your photos of Queens and you could see them online or in our paper!
To submit them to us, tag @qnsgram on Instagram, visit our Facebook page,
tweet @QNS or email email@example.com (subject: Queens Snaps).
STORY: After a massive search, a missing Rego Park girl has been
SUMMARY: A Rego Park teenager who went missing two days ago
has been found safe, police announced on Saturday.
REACH: 35,977 people (as of 7/9/18)