In a historic first the HUD Office of Field Policy and Management, Greensboro Field Office, in partnership with the City of Greensboro's Neighborhood Development Department on April 23, 2019 hosted a Making Homes Safer event at the Greensboro Coliseum Event Center. HUD and the City of Greensboro a HUD Lead and Healthy Homes grantee focused on increasing awareness of the City of Greensboro's Healthy Homes and Lead programs to more effectively work to remove lead-based paint and other health risks from homes. Additionally, in an innovative approach to support economic opportunity, the event included on-site, cost free, Renovation, Repair and Painting and Lead Abatement Certification Training for contractors performing work that disturbs lead-based paint in homes, child care facilities, and schools built before 1978.
Contractors must be certified and follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination. The event attracted 75+ members of the public (homeowners and renters), landlords, real estate professionals, contractors and trades people, developers and college students from around Guilford County. Four hours of Healthy Homes certification continuing education was also offered, led by Neasha Graves of UNC Institute for the Environment's Environmental Resource Program. As a result of the event 15 new contractors are Lead Abatement certified, and another 8 are Renovation, Repair and Painting certified.
"Today's event was an absolute homerun," said Moses. "The collaborative and innovative efforts working with the City of Greensboro will help save lives while also providing economic opportunities for work in a specialized area to include helping with sustainable homeownership."
In addition to the certification courses, the event offered various sessions with tracks aimed at the interest of attendees. The sessions included: Environmental Hazards Repairs and State laws and Regulations, led by Jeff Dellinger of the NC Department of Health and Human Services. Becoming a Contractor with Neighborhood Development, led by City staff., REAC Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) Inspections-UPCS-V Demonstration, led by HUD representatives Marco Santo Domingo and Elizabeth Basirico-(Improve the Way We Work). Health Effects from Unhealthy Homes, highlighting the health effects of lead in children, led by Dr. Ricky Langley of NC Division of Public Health's Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology, Integrated Pest Management (IPM), led by Jayne Windham of the StopPests program at Cornell University's IPM Center and City Housing Programs and Code Compliance led by City staff. There were 10 exhibitors comprised of public, private and philanthropic organizations that included: Wells Fargo, UNCG Center for Housing and Community Studies, State Farm Insurance, HUD FHEO, The Greensboro Fire Department, USDA and others.
In the evening, in support of sustainable homeownership HUD held a Homeowner, Tenant and Homebuyer track offering a Homebuyer Boot Camp led by HUD housing counseling agency, Housing Consulting Group. HUD provides support to a nationwide network of HUD Certified Housing Counseling Agencies (HCA) and counselors. HCA's are trained and approved to provide tools to current and prospective homeowners, renters so that they can make responsible choices to address their housing needs considering their financial situations. Search the map online or search by Zipcode for a housing counseling agency near you, or call HUD's interactive voice system at: (800) 569-4287 or there is an App for that. Learn more too: Watch the "Housing Counseling Works" video on HUD's YouTube Channel.