Aria Ellise, blackdoctor.org
The Flint, Michigan, water crisis started back in April 2014 after Michigan Republican Governor Rick Snyder and other politicos fast tracked a measure to change the source of processing Flint’s water from the Detroit Water and Sewage Department directly to the Flint River–all in order to save/get money. As a result, the water became contaminated with lead and other toxins and more than a dozen people died and thousands of children and adults became seriously ill after being routinely being exposed to dangerous levels of lead based water. Since then, many studies have been done, court trials had, fundraisers created, astronomical water bills issued and a lot of the “blame game” has been played, but one thing remains: Flint residents are still without clean water.
Earlier this year, a federal magistrate approved a $97 million settlement. The order mandates that thousands of pipes made of lead and galvanized steel be replaced—a three year project. To that end, additional resources have also been allocated from federal and private sources making a total of more than $250 million being earmarked to resolve the man-made disaster.
WT Stevens Construction, a construction management and services firm based in Flint, Mich., is the only black-owned company to be awarded a service contract to replace contaminated water pipes across the city.
The Network Journal reports that WT Stevens is “one of just four companies recently contracted—under a court order—to replace more than 18,000 lead corroded pipes.”