Safe Siting Initiative
The Texas Choose Safe Places - Safe Siting Initiative helps operators look for environmental hazards at or near child care locations. Chemical contamination and other environmental hazards can pose a serious threat to children’s health. Key elements to safe siting are:
- Former Site Use
Past manufacturing, industrial, or agricultural uses can leave harmful substances behind in buildings or on the land.
- Nearby Properties
Some harmful substances can move through the air, water, or soil. This can affect neighboring buildings or properties. Hazardous waste sites, dry cleaners, nail salons, and gas stations are sites that may be of concern.
- Naturally Occurring Hazards
Naturally occurring contamination comes from substances already in the environment. For examples, some areas in Texas have naturally high levels of arsenic in the ground. Arsenic from the ground may get into well water or top soil.
- Building Materials and Conditions
There may be harmful substances in some materials used to make buildings. Older buildings may have lead-based paint and asbestos hazards. Buildings may also become contaminated from mold or pests.
- Access to Safe Drinking Water
Lead, nitrate, and bacteria are common water contaminants. These contaminants can affect children’s health. Contaminants may get into water from environmental sources, water pipes, and water fixtures.
How can I practice safe siting?
Use the national Choose Safe Places program’s Set it up Safe planning tool. This tool can guide your search for a location for your child care program.
If you have a specific property you are interested in, TXCSP can help screen the address for known or potential hazards. We do this by using environmental data from certain state and federal agencies. Only commercial properties, vacant lots, or undeveloped land are eligible for TXCSP property screenings at this time.
Have concerns about a specific hazard at or near your child care location? We can help you further assess the hazard to see if it poses a potential threat.
To request an environmental screening or discuss a specific hazard concern, email TXCSP at email@example.com or leave us a message at 1-888-681-0927.
If requesting a screening, be sure to include the following information
- your contact information
- the address of the property
- the age of any buildings on the property
- the source of drinking water
- past use of the building
Together, we can keep kids safe where they learn, grow and play!