By Duke Staff
On Jan. 31, the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority sent out a notice on their website that, due to low levels of chlorine in a single testing site, all water from the tap should be boiled before being consumed.
A veritable wave of panic swept over Duquesne this announcement. Our school’s administration announced that water bottles and jugs would be given out at each of the residence halls. Suddenly, brushing teeth or taking a fountain break became a potentially risky maneuver.
Do you remember how you felt when you came across the warning? Maybe you started to worry, counting how many times you drank water over the course of the day. Maybe you just felt annoyance at the inconvenience.
However you felt, there is one important thing to remember: This is how the people of Flint, Michigan, have been feeling since June 24, 2015. More than two years since the ACLU leaked an Environmental Protection Agency memo revealing the city’s water pipes had dangerously high levels of lead, Flint still does not have clean water to drink, according to CNN.
Worse, less is being done to help the battered city than before. In December, Congress shut down the investigation into Flint’s situation.
In a time where government and the country could not be more divided, this is an issue we can all come together on. It is absolutely unacceptable and abhorrent that an entire city has gone without water to drink for this long, and now that we have all gone through a small experience of what has been going on at Flint, The Duke is making a call to action for all Duquesne students. There are multiple organizations still fighting this forgotten crisis, and they could use your help.
The Flint Child Health and Development fund has raised millions of dollars to assist kids affected by the disaster, particularly those who are aged 6 and under. They can be contacted via their website cfgf.org or at 810-767-8270.
The Flint Water Fund has drivers deliver bottled water to the people of the city. They also provide filters and other emergency services. The fund can be found at unitedwaygenesee.org.
The Catholic Charities of Genesee County is accepting donations of water, filters, clothing and personal hygiene products to distribute across Flint. They can be reached at catholiccharitiesflint.org.