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Health

5 Years Later, Flint Residents Say Water Crisis Is Not Over

Five years to the day after leaders in Flint switched water sources to save money, residents came to Lansing to talk about the toxins that caused a health crisis that may last generations. 

On the steps of the State Capitol, stories of pain poured out of families from Flint.

Brandi Clements talked about her father, who died of cancer.

“My father, Joseph Clements, may he rest in complete power, was a victim of the water crisis," said Clements. 

On April 25, 2014, the city began getting water from the Flint River instead of the Detroit water and sewer department, which had been used for years.

But it was not treated properly. Thousands drank, cooked and cleaned with water filled with lead.

Pipe replacements continue and the state says lead levels in the overall city water supply are below federal levels.

Flint natives like Traci Hacker do not believe it.

“I still don’t trust water anywhere," said Hacker. 

She hoped lawmakers inside the Capitol heard the voices on the outside.

“There’s still a problem in Flint and it still isn’t fixed," said Hacker. "And they need to fix it. They need to do something about it It’s been 5 years. It’s too long.”

Many speakers said they’ll also never trust the government again. 

Flint water
Credit Reginald Hardwick / WKAR Public Media
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WKAR Public Media
Flint residents rally at the State Capitol 5 years after the city switched water sources, leading to lead contamination.

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