Every drop helps when it comes to Flint water

I recently attended my first press conference – a speech over luncheon at the convention of the Michigan Press Association in Grand Rapids.

It was an interesting experience, especially because the event featured our governor, Rick Snyder.

Snyder, as many know, has been under a lot of heat recently due to the Flint water crisis.

“We have a crisis in Flint,” he said. “We have a situation where people cannot drink the water coming out of the tap. That’s wrong. Worse than that, people were exposed to lead.”

At the conference, he signed a $28 million bill to help Flint regain drinkable and usable water.

The money will go toward water filters and will help run tests on those exposed to high amounts of lead.

Snyder took some responsibility for the events, but then went on to say that there were issues at all levels of government.

Snyder has been accused of being aware of the abnormal levels of lead in the water after Flint switched from the Detroit water system to Flint River water.

Snyder said 87 cases of the waterborne Legionnaires’ disease were reported in Genesee County from June 2014 to November 2015, resulting in ten deaths.

Many people, including Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, have called for Snyder’s resignation due to his failure to act on the information that has now been detrimental to many lives.

The next Democratic debate between Sanders and Hillary Clinton, the former first lady and secretary of state, is scheduled to take place in Flint on March 6.

Some celebrities, including Big Sean, Madonna, Beyonce and Mark Wahlberg (the first two being Michigan natives), have taken action in donating bottles of water and money to Flint.

Even UDM has started a water drive to support Flint residents. It is sponsored by the admissions office, Student Government Association, Titan athletics, the law and dental campuses, University Services, Campus Ministry, Residence Life and Student Life.

Every contribution counts and is helpful, but running water is a necessity for any household.

Hopefully, Flint can switch back to Detroit’s water system or have its water pipes treated or replaced, but both with likely take quite some time.

Until the crisis can be resolved, sending water, money and other resources will help those in need in Flint.

Daniel is VN news editor