Flushing's High School's Independent Voice

Water Crisis Continues Four Years In

March 9, 2017

Four years in, most of the country seems to have forgotten about the Flint Water Crisis after its uproar on the media last year. However, the citizens of Flint still do not have clean water. Andrea Ananich, a Flushing High School teacher and wife of State Senator Jim Ananich, says the pipes in her Flint neighborhood have been fixed, but she is in the minority; as of January 5th, the city has only 600 of the city’s 29,400 have been recovered.

The Ananich Family still uses bottled water even though they are told tap water is now safe. “My son and dog drink the bottles,” says Andrea. There hasn’t been a long term change in their household, only changing the hardware in their house which was a short term cost for them. “A lot of families got free filters through a program, but we did not participate in that,” Andrea explained.

The real problem, Andrea says, is “The infrastructure in Flint isn’t close to being done, the trust in the community of the government isn’t there any more,” she claims, “Even if they say we can drink the water, (the people of Flint) still won’t believe them.” because the city has had contaminated water for over three years.

Andrea also believes the government isn’t as involved as it should be:  “(Flint’s water) is not the topic it once was,” she says, but, “I know from living with my husband he is still quite active, but the government as a whole isn’t; there’s no more meetings.”

There was a meeting though, on January 11.  The town-hall-style meeting held by government by holding government officials regarding the crisis. Officials there said it could cost more than $100 million to fix the pipes, but not until 2019-2020. They said residents should still be using filters at home. This did not satisfy Andrea, who said “that was the fear we had, we’re going to get to a point where no one cares about you anymore.”

‘I feel it’s important to note that a lot of communities could have crumpled under the pressure of this,” Andrea concludes “to watch citizens in Flint to worry about if their neighbors have water, and trying to get access (to clean water) for their children, or worry about how they can solve this problem speaks to who the Flint people are, and I believe in them, we will emerge out of this, but it’s just going to be a long process. The people in Flint like to say a negative things about the city, but we don’t give up… watching people come together as a whole has been almost inspiring.”

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