“Armenian Women for Health and Health Environment” (AWHHE) NGO joined the Global Alliance to Eliminate Lead Paint – a joint program of WHO and UNEP within the framework of the International Lead Poisoning Prevention Week (ILPPW) held on 23-29 October, 2022.
The campaign aimed to draw public attention to the effects of lead on human health, especially children, to highlight the importance of countries’ efforts to prevent this exposure, and to demand that governments achieve the universal goal of phasing out lead paint through stricter legislation.
Within the framework of the week of action, AWHHE conducted a Roundtable discussion to summarize the NGO’s ten-year effort to phase out lead paint and outline the necessary steps that can contribute to solving this problem. The event took place on October 28 in the Conference Hall of the Institute of Mechanics of the RA National Academy of Sciences.
It was attended by representatives of civil society organizations interested in the problem of lead paints (“Consumers Support Center” NGO, Dalma Sona, “Ecoteam” NGO, Yerevan Aarhus Center, “Ecological Union” NGO, “EcoLur” NGO) and experts. At the end of the discussion, the following recommendations were presented:
- Armenia, as a member of EAEU, should immediately propose an amendment to paragraph 11 of the draft technical regulations of the Customs Union “On the safety of paint materials” from 2013, noting that paint materials should not contain chemicals, including metals, belonging to the 1st class of hazard, the amount of which in terms of dry residue exceeds 0.009% (90 ppm);
- Submit a recommendation to the National Assembly of Armenia to support the listing of lead chromate in the Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade;
- Send a letter to the Focal Points of SAICM of the RA Ministry of Environment and the RA Ministry of Health with a request to make the problem of lead paints in the priorities of the action plans of the relevant ministries, ensuring risk reduction and protecting the health of the population, especially children;
- Contact the NGO Consumers Support Center to strengthen monitoring and enforcement of existing lead paint regulations. National bans on lead paint should include provisions for enforcement and the consequences of non-compliance;
- Submit an appeal to the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in order to ensure the use of safe paint and varnish materials in the construction and reconstruction of children’s educational institutions (ADB conducts a wide program in Armenia for the construction and reconstruction of children’s educational institutions);
- Submit an appeal to local importers of the paint and varnish industry to limit the import of paints to Armenia with a lead content of more than 90 ppm, provide a list of brands of manufacturers of paints containing lead not more than 90 ppm.
Interview for Mariam radio about Lead in Paint