During his State of the State address Tuesday, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder apologized for his response to the Flint water crisis and promised to fix the man-made disaster amid calls for his resignation and two lawsuits filed against city and state officials.
CNN reported Gov. Snyder stated the following: “To begin, I’d like to address the people of Flint. Your families face a crisis, a crisis you did not create and could not have prevented. I am sorry and I will fix it.”
Snyder requested that state legislators approve the release of $28 million to fund a series of actions that could be taken immediately to help the residents of the devastated Mid-Western city.
The Governor’s multi-million dollar plan would include:
- Bottled water, filters, replacement filters;
- Assistance to Flint to help with utility-related issues;
- Testing and replacing fixtures in schools and other high-risk locations;
- Treatment of children with high lead levels;
- Services for the treatment of potential behavioral health issues;
- Support for children and adolescent health centers;
- An infrastructure integrity study for pipes and connections.
On Wednesday’s edition of TV One’s NewsOne Now, Roland Martin spoke with Trachelle Young, an attorney involved in one of the lawsuits filed against Gov. Rick Snyder, and Mercedes Kinney, a Flint resident who shared how the crisis has personally impacted her life.
Kinney, who has lived in Flint since she was a child, told Martin, “The water crisis has impact[ed] us to the point that we cannot take baths, we cannot brush our teeth, and the water that we were receiving prior to now was so bad and smelled so bad you wouldn’t believe it.”
She described the water as being brown and said the issues began almost a year ago, adding, “No one came to our rescue — there were cries from all nationalities of people trying to get someone to listen to us and no one cared.”
Kinney expressed her outrage with Gov. Snyder’s response to the crisis, saying, “The governor cannot just give us bottles of water, because we cannot take a bath.”
Trachelle Young, an attorney representing a group of individuals from the area in a class action lawsuit, called the city of Flint “a crime scene.”
Young explained that Gov. Snyder and those he appointed are all liable and need to be held accountable for their involvement.
Young added, “We are targeting the governor, all of the emergency managers” appointed by Gov. Snyder that made the decision to switch the city’s water source from Lake Huron to the Flint River “and completely disregarded the health, welfare, and safety of residents.”
Watch Roland Martin, Attorney Trachelle Young, Flint resident Mercedes Kinney, and the NewsOne Now panel discuss the Flint water crisis in the video clip above.
Subscribe to the “NewsOne Now” Audio Podcast on iTunes.