If you thought the Flint, MI lead poisoning was bad, it turns out that numerous communities in California are even worse. Blood testing data gathered by Reuters has revealed that children from one Fresno community had blood lead levels up to three times higher than those seen in children from Flint.
Even though California is known for their staunch environmental advocacy, it appears that the Golden State is not immune to the hazards of lead. High rates of childhood lead poisoning have been observed in a number of Bay Area communities, along with downtown Los Angeles. In one area of Fresno, 13.6 percent of blood samples collected from children under the age of six revealed high levels of lead — compared to just 5 percent across the city of Flint, MI during the water contamination crisis.
A Reuters investigation this week uncovered nearly 3,000 different communities across the U.S. with lead levels higher than those found in Flint, Michigan, which has been the center of an ongoing water contamination crisis since 2014.
click image for link to interactive map…
The investigation found that many of the hot-spots are receiving little attention or funding. Local healthcare advocates said they hope the reporting will spur action from influential community leaders.
All of the communities Reuters investigated had lead levels at least two times higher than Flint’s; more than 1,000 were four times higher. In most cases, the local data covered a 5- to 10-year period through 2015, the analysis states.
“It’s outrageous that this sort of government-made catastrophe would happen anywhere in the United States,” Representative Justin Amash said Wednesday as he opened his allotted time period to question a panel before Congress about the lead crisis in Flint, Michigan. “The State of Michigan needs to provide comprehensive assistance to the people of Flint; and the state has the resources, I can assure you that as a former state legislator.”
Flint, MI — As the water crisis in Flint shows no signs of coming to an end anytime soon, one thing is clear — not one government official has yet to be held accountable for causing it.
As details emerge about how officials have known about the tainted water and simply allowed the public to consume it without taking action, newly released documents reveal that the state wasn’t entirely without action — for themselves.
Flint, MI — Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha is a hero. Though it’s possible you haven’t heard her name yet, you probably will soon — she’s responsible for ringing the original alarm bell about the lead contamination of Flint’s public water supply.
And the ordeal Hanna-Attisha endured in order to do so — including the nearly slanderous attempt by public officials to discredit her research — makes her an irreproachable champion of integrity.
“She was a doc on the front lines who knows to pick up the phone … rattle some cages and say, ‘Hey, come here, we’ve got a problem,’” Dr. Eden Wells, chief medical examiner for the State of Michigan, said of Hanna-Attisha, reported the Detroit Free Press.
As far back as February 2015, the governor’s administration was informed of issues with Flint’s water
Redacted emails released Wednesday by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder show that his administration was informed of problems with Flint’s water almost a year ago, many months before the embattled governor or his staff begrudgingly admitted to bearing any responsibility for poisoning a city—or for fixing the problem.
A background memo sent to the governor on February 1, 2015, “dismissed the pleas of Flint’s then-mayor Dayne Walling for state assistance, saying that the mayor had ‘seized on public panic … to ask the state for loan forgiveness and more money for infrastructure improvement’,” the Guardian reports from Detroit.
The Michigan chapter of international Muslim organization Who is Hussain? pledged to donate 30,000 bottles of water to Flint, Michigan, where the local, state, and federal governments have all declared a state of emergency over lead contamination in the water supply.
“We saw what needed to be done and we decided to do it. We reached out to schools, neighbours, friends, mosques, anyone and everyone to help us by donating a case of water, or money towards a case,” Dr. Aziza Askari, the head of the non-profit’s chapter told the Washington Times.
“The City of Flint has experienced a Manmade disaster,” said the city’s mayor Monday evening, as she declared a state of emergency over evidently staggering levels of lead in the city’s tap water. Mayor Karen M. Weaver has requested federal assistance to deal with the fallout from over a year’s worth of tainted water delivered to Flint residents and, allegedly, falsely declared safe by government officials.