Health problems persist in Flint 10 years after water poisoning

By KASPERA 2 Min Read
a woman carries bottled water away from a distribution center
This woman is among many Newark residents who got bottled water from distribution centers after news broke in 2019 about high lead levels in drinking water for large parts of their New Jersey city.Spencer Platt/Staff/Getty Images News

A human-caused crisis

Melodie Marsh remembers when the National Guard brought water bottles to her home in early 2016. Having soldiers show up to say the water was not safe “was just a scary moment,” she says.

an Army National Guard specialist, in uniform, loading pallets of bottled water into cars
Army National Guard specialist Steve Hepler loaded bottled water into waiting cars in Flint in January 2016. Polluted tap water meant city residents could no longer safely bathe in tap water or drink it.Geoff Robins/AFP/Getty Images News

The next day she went to her school in another town.

“Everybody was looking at me because I was a Flint resident,” she recalls. It was as if there had been something wrong with her, not the water. “That,” she recalls, “was probably one of the hardest experiences I’ve had with the water crisis.”

Marsh now goes to Howard University in Washington, D.C. People still ask about the water when they hear she’s from Flint. “It’s hard to get rid of the stigma,” she says.

So how did her town’s water get poisoned with lead?

It started with the city of Flint having money problems. A state law let then-governor Rick Snyder send in managers to get struggling cities’ finances back on track. Eleven factors were supposed to guide such decisions. Cities that relied more on state funding were more likely to get state-appointed managers. But other factors seemed to play a role, too. The state was

When Everett Graham was in grade school, news broke of a sharp spike in levels of lead in kids’ blood. Lead is a toxic heavy metal that can cause a …read more

Source:: Science Explores

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