Interfaith effort responds to Michigan’s Contaminated water supply.
The Flint water crisis has pushed state and federal officials to respond with urgent help. Residents of Flint, Michigan have been exposed to dangerous lead levels due to the faulty water system. In response, musicians, religious groups and even ex-prisoners formed to participate in the grassroots effort of offering bottled water the residents of the city. Flint is located nearly 70 miles from Detroit.
An interfaith coalition is functioning to offer much needed drinking water to Flint residents as the metropolis continues to suffer the effects of lead contamination in its water supply. The participants include Flint Jewish Federation, Michigan Muslim Community Council, InterFaith Leadership Council of Metropolitan Detroit and Catholic Charities. The city residents are presently accepting donations of money, time and water.
The faith organizations, apart from handling out food and water are also concentrating on longer term aims. They want to ensure that the economically poor city, the place where President Obama declared an emergency crisis concerning its poisoned water, will never be neglected again.
Bob Bruttell of the InterFaith Leadership Council of Metropolitan Detroit said that a vital role the church can play is to be an ethical watchdog so that the community benefits. The response to the crisis was unprecedented. Large numbers of religious people -from in Flint black congregations to evangelicals based quite at a far distance, have responded with money and time. The majorly African-American populated city has announced that its discolored water is not safe for drinking. Bruttell has words of caution: the building of a new water system in the city is such a herculean task that the problem cannot be solved even if all the religious groups worked together.
Engineers and scientists who went through the enormous problem has opined that supplying good water free from pollutants and lead will not be either easy or quick. Public health officials seek to test the large numbers of children who have bathed and drunk the water supplied by the city. There is a fear that these children could suffer emotional and developmental difficulties linked with more than average lead levels within the bloodstream.
Flint has seen deployment of soldiers belonging to the Michigan National Guard. About 70 National Guardsman are handing out water. A state of emergency has been declared by federal officials, thus bringing in $5 million more into efforts made in the city.
— Herb Scribner (@HerbScribner) January 20, 2016