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Activists call for action on Michigan's PFAS & drinking water problems

Steve Carmody
Michigan Radio

Water activists say the candidates for governor in Michigan are not proposing bold enough plans to fix the state’s water problems.

Activists gathered in Flint to mark “Imagine a Day without Water." The city has become a poster child for Michigan’s issues with everything from tainted tap water to unaffordable bills.

Monica Lewis-Patrick is the president of “We the People of Detroit.” She lays the blame for Michigan’s water issues on outgoing Governor Rick Snyder.

Credit Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio
Michigan Radio
"Of all places, in the great city of Flint, we demand water affordability," says Monica Lewis-Patrick, the president of 'We the People of Detroit,' "We demand clean safe access to water for all.”

But Lewis-Patrick doesn’t see either Democratic candidate Gretchen Whitmer or Republican candidate Bill Schuette proposing enough to deal with the water problems Michigan is facing.

“We have not seen the kind of visioning and transformative thinking that it’s going to take to fund our infrastructure, and to also insure that everyone in Michigan has access to that quality water source,” says Lewis-Patrick.

Whether it’sPFASor water affordability, the activists say state leaders in Lansing need to do more.

Standing with the activists was Emily Sioma. The 2018 Miss Michigan has made raising awareness about the state’s water issues her platform issue.   

She says this should not be considered a political issue.

“It’s not about politics. It’s about policy,” says Sioma, “It’s about making sure we have clean water for all citizens to drink.”

Sioma says she has received “very minimal pushback” for her call for clean, safe drinking water. 

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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