Missouri Independent, Midwest Newsroom, co-host of community discussions on Lead • Missouri Independent

A joint investigation by The Missouri Independent and the Midwest Newsroom

That’s according to a study published last year more than 80% of Missouri children had a certain amount of lead in their blood.

In the Midwest, in Iowa, Kansas and Nebraska, the data painted a similar picture — children with elevated blood lead levels well above the national average.

For the past six months, The Missouri Independent and NPR’s Midwest Newsroom have been working to figure out why.

By analyzing academic research, delving into state and local data, and interviewing parents, experts, and attorneys from across the country, a collaborative investigation entitled “U.Nguided‘ aimed to shed light on a public health disaster that continues to poison children every year.

With the conclusion of the project, both news organizations are hosting a community discussion together on August 30 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Kansas City Kansas Public Library.


Tuesday, August 30th

6-7:30 p.m


Kansas City Kansas Public Library

625 Minnesota Ave.

Kansas City, Kansas 66101

to register:


At the event, a panel of experts will present the facts and answer questions about lead sources in our area and available solutions.

Participation is free and refreshments will be provided. Those who cannot attend in person can participate via Zoom.

The discussion will be moderated by reporters Samantha Horton and Niara Savage and will include:

Elizabeth Friedmana physician with Children’s Mercy Kansas City and director of the pediatric environmental health specialty for Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Iowa.

Ganga HettiarachchiProfessor of Soil and Environmental Chemistry at Kansas State University and one of the world’s leading scientists in the fields of trace metal and nutrient chemistry in soil.

Beto Lugo Martineza community organizer and executive director of CleanAirNow in Kansas City.

AmyRobertsProject Manager of the Prevention of Lead Poisoning in Children and Health Homes Program for the Kansas City, Missouri Department of Health.

In addition to the panel discussion, free lead paint test kits will be provided to the first 15 people to attend in person and mailed to the first 10 people to attend virtually. To register in person or virtually to participate, Visit the Kansas City Kansas Public Library website.

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