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Federal Government Learns More About Michigan's Response To Flint Water Crisis

Apr 14, 2016

Capitol Hill
Credit Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Michigan health and environmental department chiefs went before Congress yesterday to explain the state’s response to the Flint water crisis to members of Congress.  


Michigan health and environmental department chiefs were in Washington Wednesday to explain the state’s response to the Flint water crisis to members of Congress.  Nick Lyons directs the state Department of Health and Human Services.  He said it’s plain the state should have done more sooner.  “I know the people of Flint are hurt,” he said.  “They are upset.  I know there is anger and mistrust.  Rightfully so.” 

But state and federal officials say they can’t predict how long it will take before the water is drinkable without being filtered.  The pediatrician who first called attention to high lead levels in Flint’s water also testified.  Doctor Mona Hanna-Attisha asked members of Congress to approve more long-term assistance to help children who were exposed to lead in the water.  “Our nation has never been reluctant to aid victims of hurricanes and floods and tornadoes,” she said.  “Short-sighted cost-cutting and willful bureaucratic blindness caused the calamity in Flint, but it is nothing short of a natural disaster.”

She says the assistance that’s already been approved by Congress and the Michigan Legislature will only offer stop-gap aid.  She says the situation demands a long-term commitment for decades. 

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— Rick Pluta is the Managing Editor and Reporter for the Michigan Public Radio network.  Contact WEMU News at 734.487.3363 or email us at studio@wemu.org