State University of New York Institute of Technology
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Lowe's to Pay $500,000 in EPA Lead Paint Settlement

As you all may know, lead exposure can cause a range of health problems from behavioral disorders and learning disabilities, to seizures and death. Young children are at the greatest risk because their nervous systems are still developing. In 1978, lead-based paint was banned in the United States but remains in many older homes and apartments. Dust hazards can occur when the paint deteriorates or is disrupted during home renovation and remodeling. Last Thursday, April 17, Lowe's Home Centers, the No. 2 U.S. home improvement retail chain, was forced to pay a $500,000 penalty for violating federal rules governing lead paint exposure, U.S. authorities said. In an investigation by the Environmental Protection Agency, it was found that Lowe's could not provide documentation to prove that contractors it hired to work at 13 stores across nine states were certified by the agency, or had used its approved kits to test for lead paint at work sites. Since the lawsuit, Lowe's had also agreed to implement a new compliance program at more than 1,700 stores nationwide.

Although Lowe's cooperated with the agency by setting up new programs and agreed to pay the $500,000 violation, it still doesn't make up for the fact that Lowe's knowingly violated the rules in order to save a few bucks. It's not ethically correct for a company or anyone to do something they know is wrong or harmful to others, yet, they do it anyways because it benefits them.

 

By: Michael Hajec


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