Compensate Flint Residents For Any Longterm Health Harms -- Clinton

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Hillary Clinton

There is no excuse for what’s happening in Flint. A city of 99,000 people—a majority of them African-American, 40 percent living in poverty—spent nearly two years drinking and bathing in water that we now know contained dangerous amounts of lead.

Officials told the public the water was safe--even after a GM plant stopped using it because it was too corrosive. If the water wasn't good enough for cars, it wasn't good enough for kids--period.

The people of Flint deserve to have safe drinking water restored as quickly as possible. Their children deserve to immediately get the health care they need. And they deserve to know what Governor Snyder knew and when he knew it.

While I’m glad that the Michigan state legislature passed a plan last October that will partially cover the cost of purchasing safe water until July, I'm calling on the state of Michigan to finance water purchases from Detroit until safe drinking water is fully restored in Flint.

FEMA should conduct an expedited review of the city’s water infrastructure for damage, and the federal government should step up to be a partner in making necessary repairs.

I also urge the Obama Administration to immediately set up a health monitoring and surveillance system to test Flint residents for lead poisoning. Children who have been exposed to lead need to be immediately treated and monitored. And if there are long-term health impacts, those children and their families should be compensated.

In America, no mother should have to worry that the water her children are drinking and bathing in isn’t safe. I believe environmental justice can’t just be a slogan—it has to be a goal.Flint has suffered ongoing water quality issues since the city adopted the state-appointed emergency manager’s plan to change the city’s drinking water source and the city began drawing water from the Flint River as an interim measure.Since early 2014, abnormally high levels of e. coli, a dangerous bacteria; trihalomethanes, which can make hot showers potentially toxic; lead, which causes long-term neurological problems; and copper have been found in the city’s water.

 

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