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Having children at home did not prompt parents to test for radon, secondhand smoke

A University of Louisville School of Nursing researcher has found that the presence of children in the home did not motivate parents to test and mitigate for radon and secondhand tobacco smoke, both of which cause lung cancer. The findings highlight a need to raise awareness on these exposure risks and their long-term impact on children.

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Radon: It could be lurking in your home or child’s school

Lung cancer is the deadliest cancer in the Unites States. It’s caused most frequently by smoking, but radon exposure is believed to be the second leading cause. Radon may be lurking in your own home or your child’s school without you even knowing.

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Radon Can Pose Bigger Cancer Risk for Children - UN Study

Infants and children can be more at risk than adults of developing some cancers when exposed to radiation, for example from nuclear accidents, a U.N. scientific report said on Friday.

Children were found to be more sensitive than adults for the development of 25 percent of tumor types including leukemia, and thyroid, brain and breast cancer, it said.

"The risk can be significantly higher, depending on circumstances," the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) added in a statement.

UNSCEAR said it began working on the report in 2011, the same year as Japan's Fukushima nuclear accident, although the world's worst such disaster in 25 years was not mentioned in the statement. The committee said in May that cancer rates were not expected to rise after the Fukushima accident.

Children Use Artwork to Educate Families

SALT LAKE CITY-- Utah children have another opportunity to raise awareness about the risks of indoor radon by participating in the 2013 National Radon Poster Contest. The state contest officially opens Aug. 1, and runs through Oct. 15.

The Utah Department of Environmental Quality, Division of Radiation Control has coordinated this year's contest in partnership with Kansas State University and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Children ages nine through 14 enrolled in a public, private, territorial, tribal, Department of Defense, or home schooling are eligible to participate. Members of a sponsoring club, such as a scouting organization, 4-H, or art, computer and science clubs are also eligible. There is no entry fee, but only one entry per student is allowed.

Indiana Child Care Facilities Improve Environmental Safety

TERRE HAUTE — Eleven Indiana child care facilities have boosted their efforts to protect children from environmental threats. Among them is Tender Moments Playhouse, a facility in Terre Haute that received five stars.

As members of the Indiana Department of Environmental Management’s Five Star Environmental Recognition Program for Child Care Providers, these providers excel in their efforts to offer environmental conditions in their facilities that exceed minimum requirements.

“Children under the age of 6 are our most vulnerable population,” said IDEM Commissioner Thomas Easterly. “Participants in IDEM’s Five Star program deserve recognition for exceeding expectations to minimize children’s exposure to harmful contaminants. Any family considering their child care options should definitely consider these facilities first.”

Renovations May be Putting Children at Risk

Canada's $44 billion renovation industry has been the fastest growing part of the housing sector for the last 10 years, but it is risking the health of those living in the houses under construction -- particularly children -- says a report by the Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA).

Renovation activities including energy retrofits, if not done carefully, can greatly increase indoor contaminant exposures, says the report. Renovations may disturb toxic contaminants such as lead, asbestos or polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) that are legacies of past product uses and practices. Air sealing or tightening a building can reduce the frequency of air exchange and potentially lead to higher radon levels in indoor air, as well as moisture and mould problems.

Smart Mama, Scary Book

I have a very active fantasy life. Before you start snickering, let me just tell you that my imaginings are more along the lines of Mary in In Plain Sight or Madonna in "Express Yourself" rather than Linda Lovelace in Deep Throat. Anyway, over the last few months, my daydreams have become extremely mundane. I fantasize about what sports my son will play when he's older (Gabe is just a year old) or how he'll make me laugh when he's in the second grade and thinks Martin Luther King Jr. was a real king like I once did, or even how I'll foil his attempts to sneak out of the house when he's a teenager. I tell you this not to make you gag, but to communicate how much I love my son. He's the absolute center of my world—my past, present, and future. And I also tell you this because I know that's how most people love their children—WITH every fiber of their being.

The Children’s Environmental Health Network: Protecting Preschoolers from Radon

The Children’s Environmental Health Network: Protecting Preschoolers from Radon

Although most U.S. children under age six spend up to 40 hours a week in child care settings, little has been done to protect young children from environmental health hazards like radon in child care and preschools. The Children’s Environmental Health Network (CEHN) is a national, multidisciplinary, non-profit organization whose mission is to protect the fetus and the child from environmental hazards and promote a healthy environment by focusing on the areas of research, policy, and education. Recognizing preschools and child care settings as a missed opportunity to address children’s environmental health. In response, CEHN launched the Georgia Healthy Environments for Child Care Facilities and Preschools (HECCP) program in 2006.