Friday, April 25, 2009

It has been so interesting to see the response to the piece that I wrote for the Portland Tribune (about lead poisoning and the potential for contaminated eggs and contaminated chickens in an urban residential environment.)

The response ranged from outrage to provocative inquiry.  I am posting below some links to blogs posts that were written in response to this article.  I am also posting here (with permission) a response that was written/ posted last night by a mother who tested her child and chickens as a result of the article.  Both her child and chickens tested positive for lead.

Again - this serves as a reminder that there are more ways than one to get to the heart of an issue. Perhaps many parents are too afraid to consider that their child has had exposure to lead in their homes, but by addressing it from the perspective of possible contamination to pets or other wildlife - they are more willing to consider the possibilities that their home and child could be exposed. 

This conversation has also emphasized what I stand by as a main concern in my advocacy work:  Children of middle-income families are NOT getting tested.  Their pediatricians are not suggesting they get tested.  They are not being considered at risk for lead poisoning when, in fact, they are the “new demographic” of this old concern.

This article also got the attention of a journalist with Willamette Week here in Portland.  She and I are working on a follow up article to the Portland Tribune piece.  We are looking for 10 families with backyard urban chickens, families who live in pre-1978 homes.  We are working to get a donation of testing for the soil for these ten sample homes and will report on the results.  If you are interested in participating in this inquiry please let me know.

Thanks for reading.  I’m on facebook and twitter now if anyone wants to be in touch.  My twitter name is @tamararubin.  I also posted new information today on the “Resources” page.  The new information is the “For Parents” link and the “Favorite Articles” link - they both resolve to the same page for the moment.

  1. -Tamara

Letter from mom who just found out her chickens and child are contaminated.

After the article came out I also participated in a radio show about urban chickens.  This was done by MetroFarm and the show was hosted by Michael Olson.  My comment was aired near the end of the show and there was not time for a dialogue - but it got the inquiry out there.  I also had a follow up conversation with the author of the book who was interviewed as the main subject of the program and she said she is going to put a new section in the next printing of her book about potential toxicity concerns.

        link to the broadcast
        link to MetroFarm site
        link Fat Rooster Farm, the site by author of book about urban chickens
        and the book: The Joy of Keeping Chickens by Jennifer Megyesi

BLOG POST: The Well Run Dry - April 4, 2009 Post

BLOG POST: Beetles & Bees  - http://karlikuhn.blogspot.com/ - please check out her posts from April 13th and April 17th

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