MI: COVID-19 Response Must Include Residential Water Access for Handwashing and Sanitation to Protect All Residents

CONTACT: Sylvia Orduño 734-846-9465 smorduno@gmail.com

MEDIA ADVISORY: COVID-19 Response Must Include Residential Water Access for Handwashing and Sanitation to Protect All Residents

LANSING – On Friday, March 20th , People’s Water Board Coalition — frontline grassroots, social justice, environmental and faith-based groups working with low-income residents who struggle with water shutoffs and affordability — will hold a telepress conference to discuss the urgent immediate need from government to provide residential water access for drinking water, plus disinfectants, to households that do not have them. People’s Water Board Coalition has requested Governor Whitmer use her authority to send in the National Guard and request other federal assistance to set up emergency potable water stations in Detroit and Flint to provide bulk water, bleach and sanitizing products to residents who do not have running water and in their homes.

This need is keenly felt in Detroit, where roughly 10,000 households are without running water. and cannot manage proper sanitation. Although Governor Whitmer has ordered the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department to restore immediately residential water service to disconnected residents who cannot afford to pay, full restoration could take nearly six months at the current pace due to damaged and contaminated plumbing from long-term shutoffs. People’s Water Board Coalition is deeply concerned about the public health implications that this is having on the State of Michigan’s ability to control the spread of the coronavirus. Read more at https://www.peopleswaterboard.org/2020/03/16/appeal-to-gov-whitmer-in-light-of-covid-19- water-sanitation-needs/

WHO: Sylvia Orduño, People’s Water Board Coalition

Nicole Hill, Michigan Welfare Rights Organization

Dr. Paul von Oeyen, Retired Physician

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