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Oregon EPHT Lead Measures: Childhood Poverty

Lead Indicator:   Childhood blood lead testing

Measure : Childhood poverty

 

In the US, the main source of childhood lead poisoning is lead-based paint and lead-contaminated dust found in older homes and buildings.

Children are at a higher risk for exposure to lead than adults due to t heir normal behavior - crawling, exploring, teething, putting objects in their mouth - which puts them into contact with any lead that is present in their environment through eating lead-based paint chips, chewing on objects painted with lead-based paint, or swallowing house dust or soil that contains lead. 

 

Children from all social and economic levels can be affected by lead, but research has shown that lead poisoning and elevated blood lead levels are more frequent in children who grow up in poverty or live in houses build before 1950. For this reason, childhood poverty and living in pre-1950s housing are used nationally to estimate of the risk of child lead poisoning.  

 

In Oregon’s rural areas, there is a link between living in pre-1950 housing and poverty, but it is not strong. In Oregon's more populated areas, housing age is not related to poverty. So, while poverty and pre-1950 housing may make good estimates of the risk of being exposed to lead nationally, these are not the best tools available to estimate the risk in Oregon.

 

The childhood poverty measure consists of the percentage and number of children under the age of 5 living in poverty (as measured in the 2000 census) by state, county and ZIP code.

 

Table 1:       Percentage and count of children under the age of 5 living in poverty, by state and county 

 

Map 1:       Percentage of children under the age of 5 living in poverty, by county

Map 2:       Percentage of children under the age of 5 living in poverty, by zip code   

 

 

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    Table 1:       Percentage and count of children under the age of 5 living in poverty, by state and county 

 

 
  % (count)
Oregon 9.95 (22,181)
Baker 14.4 (127)
Benton 7.5 (302)
Clackamas 5.2 (1,144)
Clatsop 15.8 (317)
Columbia 9.3 (260)
Coos 16.2 (495)
Crook 10.8 (135)
Curry 7.8 (68)
Deschutes 6.3 (443)
Douglas 13.5 (762)
Gilliam 3.4 (3)
Grant 11.8 (53)
Harney 7.4 (32)
Hood River 12.8 (192)
Jackson 12.3 (1,341)
Jefferson 13.7 (201)
Josephine 15.9 (641)
Klamath 16.3 (668)
Lake 16.2 (60)
Lane 11.4 (2,122)
Lincoln 14.9 (323)
Linn 9.9 (695)
Malheur 14.5 (346)
Marion 13.4 (2,932)
Morrow 11.8 (111)
Multnomah 10.0 (4,247)
Polk 10.6 (416)
Sherman 10.2 (10)
Tillamook 15.3 (178)
Umatilla 10.9 (577)
Union 10.7 (155)
Wallowa 18.4 (65)
Wasco 13.2 (205)
Washington 6.0 (2,094)
Wheeler 13.7 (10)
Yamhill 7.6 (451)
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                 Each of the three shades on the map represent one third of all counties, with darker shades indicating a higher percentage of children under the age of 5 living in poverty.   
 

 

 

 

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Map 2:         Percentage of children under the age of 5 living in poverty, by ZIP code

 

Each of the three shades on the map represent one third of all ZIP codes, with darker shades indicating a higher percentage of children under the age of 5 living in poverty. Striped areas are ZIP codes for which no data were available.

 

Note:   Large geographical areas are not equivalent to large populations. ZIP code area varies with population density.

 

 

 

 

 

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View lead testing, housing and poverty data together