Home Improvement: Reed Announces $2 Million to Fix Environmental Health & Safety Hazards in Homes
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Jack Reed today announced $2 million in federal funds to help older and low-income residents across Rhode Island make overdue home improvements to address health and safety hazards and help residents breathe easier.
The Healthy Homes Production Grant, which is administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), will help local households address common deficiencies in homes, such as improving indoor air quality. The federal funds can also be used for a variety of other safety upgrades, such as installing handrails, replacing broken steps, and fixing leaking roofs.
The Green & Healthy Home Initiative of Rhode Island (GHHI RI) will leverage this federal funding to protect families and children by reducing home-based environmental health hazards and energy costs through lead hazard reduction, asthma and household injury prevention, aging in place initiatives, and weatherization.
“Everyone should have a safe and healthy place to live. This federal funding will help the Green & Healthy Homes Initiative of Rhode Island work with eligible residents to identify and remediate hazards such as mold, poor air quality, structural deficiencies, or a lack of other safety features such as smoke and carbon monoxide alarms,” said Senator Reed, a senior member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development (THUD) who made $85 million available for HUD’s Healthy Homes Initiative program in the FY 2023 Consolidated Appropriations law. “This is a targeted investment in making homes, people and communities healthier and safer. It will make a meaningful difference for children, seniors, and families.”
“We are delighted to receive this award for our ongoing mission to ensure every family in Rhode Island has affordable access to healthy, safe and climate friendly housing. With this support, GHHI-Rhode Island and its partnership network will help to address the social determinants of health, equity and opportunity through Healthy Housing,” said Ruth Ann Norton, President and CEO of the Green & Healthy Homes Initiative.
The Healthy Homes Production Grant Program, which is part of HUD’s Healthy Homes Initiative, launched in 1999 and is administered by the Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes. The program builds on HUD’s commitment to building safer, more resilient, and inclusive communities for all. This latest round of funding included 23 grant awards in 17 states, totaling more than $38 million.
Senator Reed has worked for years at the federal level to address the dangers of lead poisoning in Rhode Island by increasing funds to remediate lead-based paint hazards in homes and to improve surveillance and prevention efforts for health and safety hazards in homes. In the FY 2023 Consolidated Appropriations law, Senator Reed helped deliver $410 million for the Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes to implement programs that will promote and advance healthy homes across the nation.
The Green & Healthy Homes Initiative is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to addressing the social determinants of health, opportunity and equity through the creation of healthy, safe, and energy efficient homes. GHHI RI began in 2011 with a compact of more than three dozen Providence-based organizations and expanded throughout the state in 2015. Currently, GHHI RI offers direct services through their Providence location that include asthma reduction, weatherization, and healthy housing measures.