Making Us All Sicker: Detroit Water Shut-Offs May Well Have Caused Irreparable Damage

Making Us All Sicker: Detroit Water Shut-Offs May Well Have Caused Irreparable Damage

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This story we’ve been telling this season, in this comics journalism series exclusive to Truthout, started for folks like Nicole Hill three years ago. For many across the nation and throughout the world, that was when concern for Detroit’s water crisis started — and ended. Focus shifted to Flint, Michigan, and the work of people like Melissa Mays, shortly thereafter. But as we saw last month, these threats to public health have barely been addressed in the courts in that time. What movement has been made to ensure water as a human — and as a statutory — right has largely happened through the tremendous efforts of civil rights attorneys like Detroit-based Alice Jennings.

But Michigan residents know that water crises in Detroit and Flint, as well as many of the neighboring towns and suburbs — have only worsened. New findings on the impact of the water shutoffs show they may have a significant impact on the health of the region. In fact, Detroit-based water warrior Monica Lewis Patrick suggests that the city’s profiteering is making people physically ill. Meet her, and some of the other folks involved in water rights, in “Making Us All Sicker,” the final strip in the water part of our Michigan water, land and housing series.

Making Us All Sicker: Detroit Water Shut-Offs May Well Have Caused Irreparable Damage

  1. “Officials: 400 Detroit water customers disconnected,” Christina Ferretti, The Detroit News, April 25, 2017. Accessed April 25, 2017. http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/local/detroit-city/2017/04/25/officials-detroit-water-customers-disconnected/100885254/
  2. Ibid. Local groups suggest that service is staying shut off for an average of 48 hours, and Detroit Water and Sewerage Department has released no data to support their claim.
  3. “Detroit Area Economic Summary,” US Bureau of Labor Statistics, April 6, 2017. Accessed May 5, 2017. https://www.bls.gov/regions/midwest/summary/blssummary_detroit.pdf
  4. “Detroit’s latest US Census…

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