End Mass Criminalization of Black and Brown Youth

End Racism and Discrimination

Friday, 19 February 2016 00:00

To Protect Flint's Children, Get Them Out of There

Written by Andrea Germanos | Common Dreams

Public health expert argues for temporary resettlement to protect children from further risk of poisoning

As the Rust Belt city's water crisis continues, one public health expert is stressing that "the children of Flint remain in harm's way"—and suggests that the best response at the moment may be to consider temporary resettlement of the families affected.

Irwin Redlener, president and co-founder of Children's Health Fund, a professor at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, and director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness makes the argument in an op-ed published Wednesday at the Washington Post.

He acknowledges the task would be "unprecedented and complex" but states that doing so "needs to be on the table," as some "some 9,000 young children may have been exposed to contaminated water" already. And because "lead is still leaching into the drinking water from corroded pipes, and we can't be certain that the widely distributed hardware store water filters, which need to be installed properly and replaced on schedule, will reliably keep the water safe," parents have no certainty that their children will be spared exposure to the poison.

Redlener suggest two things happen to make the community safe for children. Securing sufficient emergency funding to swiftly repair the damaged infrastructure is necessary, he writes. In addition, providing comprehensive health, education, and other support services for "every family with a potentially lead-affected child" is needed because "nobody can be certain that continued exposure to lead will not be a problem until all of the damaged pipes are replaced."

Until those things happen, "every additional day in a home with lead-contaminated water puts a young child at further risk," he writes.

Among those who is able to leave town is Flint native Ariana Hawk and her family. Hawk's three-year-old son became the face of the water crisis when he appeared on the cover of TIME magazine in January.

"I'm just getting impatient with using bottled water and stuff," she told the Detroit Free Press. "It's just frustrating. … I can't do it."

Redlener's call for resettlement comes as liberal groups arrive in Lansing to deliver nearly one million signatures calling on Gov. Rick Snyder to resign over his role in the water crisis, and as he and Flint Mayor Karen Weaver spar over the approach and speed to replacing the city's lead pipes.

Link to original article from Common Dreams

Read 14663 times

Latest Economic and Social Justice News

  • 1

Willie Nelson - Keeping the Postal Service Alive

Latest News

  • Trump administration's voter suppression attempts ahead of midterms are not only 'morally wrong,' they're illegal +

    Trump administration's voter suppression attempts ahead of midterms are not only 'morally wrong,' they're illegal Imagine going to the polls on Election Day and discovering that your ballot could be collected and reviewed by the Read More
  • ACLU Blueprints Offer Vision to Cut US Incarceration Rate in Half by Prioritizing 'People Over Prisons' +

    ACLU Blueprints Offer Vision to Cut US Incarceration Rate in Half by Prioritizing 'People Over Prisons' ACLU Blueprints Offer Vision to Cut US Incarceration Rate in Half by Prioritizing 'People Over Prisons' Read More
  • As Florence Makes Landfall, Poorest Once More Likely to Suffer Most From Storm's Destruction +

    As Florence Makes Landfall, Poorest Once More Likely to Suffer Most From Storm's Destruction "These disasters drag into the light exactly who is already being thrown away," notes Naomi Klein Read More
  • How about some good news? Kansas Democratic Representative advances bill for Native Peoples. +

    How about some good news? Kansas Democratic Representative advances bill for Native Peoples. How about some good news? Kansas Democratic Representative advances bill for Native Peoples. Read More
  • How One Dying Man Changed The Debate About The Tax Bill +

    How One Dying Man Changed The Debate About The Tax Bill What mattered was that he showed up — that he put himself in front of the people whose opinions on Read More
  • Democrats Just Won a Major Victory in Virginia +

    Democrats Just Won a Major Victory in Virginia On a night of Democratic victories, one of the most significant wins came in Virginia, where the party held onto Read More
  • Repealing the Jim Crow law that keeps 1.5 million Floridians from voting. +

    Repealing the Jim Crow law that keeps 1.5 million Floridians from voting. A seismic political battle that could send shockwaves all the way to the White House was launched last week in Read More
  • Nuclear Weapons: Who Pays, Who Profits? +

    Nuclear Weapons: Who Pays, Who Profits? In an interview with Reuters conducted a month after he took office, Donald Trump asserted that the U.S. had “fallen Read More
  • Sessions issues sweeping new criminal charging policy +

    Sessions issues sweeping new criminal charging policy Attorney General Jeff Sessions overturned the sweeping criminal charging policy of former attorney general Eric H. Holder Jr. and directed Read More
  • 1
  • 2