Flint water crisis shines a spotlight on our national lead problem

Diane Regas

We’ve all watched the unfolding events in Flint, Michigan, with growing dismay. A decision to cut corners, compounded by mismanagement and secrecy, resulted in nearly 8,000 children being exposed to lead.

Many have asked, and for good reason, whether this would have happened if the community had been wealthier and whiter.

The truth is, Flint is emblematic of two larger issues we must face as a nation: the problem of environmental and social injustices and the evidence of a truly national problem that affects kids everywhere. We cannot act as if Flint is an isolated case in either sense.

We know poor communities across the country receive far more than their fair share of pollution. And when it comes to lead, there are homes in towns across America that have lead in their drinking water.

This is why we must make lead pipe service line replacement a priority – beginning, but not ending, in Flint. 

Read more in my op-ed article in The Hill.

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