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Water Safety

mother and children washing hands

We’re working to ensure everyone has access to clean, safe, and affordable drinking water.

Water Access

Living without clean water access is a daily struggle for some households. We advocate for building equitable water systems that provide everyone with access to clean water so that emergency water relief is no longer a necessity. We partner with organizations across Chicago to deliver water to people who are living without clean water.

Lead in Drinking Water

There are approximately 680,000 known lead service lines in Illinois. When present, a lead service line is the largest contributor of lead in drinking water. While lead exposure has health implications for all people, the effects are especially concerning among infants and children under the age of six.

Child care providers can learn more about lead testing and mitigation through LeadCare Illinois, a statewide program that provides free lead in water testing, training, and support.

Past Water Safety Initiatives

In 2019, we partnered with Illinois Action for Children to help over 750 home-based child care providers in the Chicago metro area address lead in their drinking water through the Lead in Water Resource Program. As a result, 7,900 children were protected from the harmful effects of lead in water exposure. Read our program’s case study (PDF).

In 2017, we partnered with the Environmental Defense Fund to test and remove sources of lead at four nonprofit child care facilities in low-income Chicago communities. This helped these facilities protect nearly 600 children from exposure to high levels of lead in water. Read more about the pilot (PDF).

Work With Us

Illinois child care providers can test their water for lead through LeadCare Illinois. Want to learn more about our water safety work? Fill out the form below.

Lead Service Lines 101

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