Class action lawsuits to be filed in Flint water crisis

- The situation in Flint is dire. Two class action lawsuits will be filed against Gov. Rick Snyder and others believed to be blamed for the crisis.

"These are war crimes on American soil, right here, in our own backyard," said resident Andrew Johnson.

As frustration over Flint's water crisis continues to boil, Keith Pemberton is getting ready for a legal battle.

"Everybody in the city has been poisoned, everybody," Pemberton said.

He'll join a number of residents as lawyers announce two new class action lawsuits against Gov. Rick Snyder,  former Flint emergency managers Darnell Earley, Jerry Ambrose and a host of state and local government agencies.

It is for their role in one of nation's the biggest public policy blunders that will impact thousands of people's lives for years to come.

"After 30 days the lead leaves your blood stream and goes into the organs of your body," Pemberton said. "It takes about 10-15 years for it to do its maximum damage."

"We all got death sentences, simple as that."

Pemberton lives with his wife daughter and three grandchildren. They are getting by with donations of bottled water, though there's not enough to go around.

Bathing is kept to a minimum.

"We shower once a week," Pemberton said. "And it's not a hot shower because the fumes or the vapors that come out."

The pace was steady at Flint firehouse Engine 61, where National Guard members are handing out cases of bottled water and Brita filters to residents like Demetric Dubois and his 11-year-old daughter Akia.

She is just one of thousands of Flint children that consumed the contaminated water.

"We've got to get her lead levels checked," Dubois said. "We're supposed to take her tomorrow. We are going to take all the kids tomorrow and get them checked out."

Many feel the state should cover the medical expenses of lead poisoned children and that for all of his apologies Gov. Rick Snyder hasn't come close to addressing their concerns.

"When Gov. Snyder came through he didn't come to Flint directly," said Johnson. "He  came on the outskirts of Flint, he (didn't) come here. He doesn't want to see this. Who wants to deal with poor people. Everybody is considered poor here."

The Obama administration declared a federal emergency in Flint but stopped short of calling it a major disaster, denying the city nearly $100 million in aid.

Snyder is appealing that decision but Pemberton isn't holding his breath.

"If it takes him as long to do that as it did for him to even acknowledge there was an emergency here," Pemberton said. "We'll all be dead."

The announcement for new class action lawsuits will take place at University of Michigan Flint Tuesday afternoon.

The same day Snyder will deliver his State of the State Address and will undoubtedly address this water crisis.
 


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