(WASHINGTON) — Flint, Michigan needs more help to deal with the water-contamination crisis in the city, Mayor Karen Weaver said Wednesday at a U.S. Conference of Mayors Event in Washington, D.C.
“Our resources are being sent to Flint as we speak … but it’s not enough. We have to hold the state accountable,” she said. “Resignations are good first steps.”
“We’ve been crying about this for almost — it’ll be two years in April,” Weaver said.
“It didn’t take a scientist to tell us that brown [drinking] water is not good,” Weaver added, noting that she doesn’t know when the water will be drinkable.
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder apologized to the citizens of Flint on Tuesday, saying he would take “full responsibility” for fixing the toxic water “catastrophe” that has stricken the town.
“Your families face a crisis,” the governor said during his State of the State address. “A crisis you did not create and could not have prevented.”
Elevated lead levels were found in the water supply in Flint after the city disconnected from Detroit’s water line to save money and began drawing water from the Flint River in April 2014. The move was intended to be a stop-gap measure until the pipeline to Port Huron Lake was completed for Flint’s municipal water.
Improperly treated water from the Flint River allowed lead to leach from the pipes, officials said. On Saturday, President Obama declared a state of emergency in Flint after a request by Snyder on Thursday.
“Those are some good first steps but Flint needs more help,” Weaver said of the governor’s plans during the State of the State.
“It’s a minority community. It’s a poor community. And our voices were not heard,” said Weaver, who stood among a dozen or so other U.S. mayors at the conference’s opening news conference.
“It’s ironic when you live in the Great Lakes state,” she added.
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